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John Donne

Photo credit: National Portrait Gallery, London

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Donne was both a poet and clergyman. In his youth he wrote passionate and witty metaphysical love poems including The Bait and The Flea. He was ordained in 1615 and thereafter wrote eloquent religious verse and sermons. He was Chaplain to King James I and was appointed Dean of St Paul's Cathedral in 1621. His work became widely celebrated following general publication after his death. This portrait is based on a miniature by Isaac Oliver painted in 1616.

National Portrait Gallery, London



oil on canvas


H 53.3 x W 44.5 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

Purchased, 1919. On long-term loan to Montacute House, Somerset

Work type



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National Portrait Gallery, London

St Martin’s Place, London, Greater London WC2H 0HE England

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