Principal Painter in Ordinary

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The title of Principal Painter in Ordinary to the King or Queen of England or, later, Great Britain, was awarded to a number of artists, nearly all mainly portraitists. It was different from the role of Serjeant Painter, and similar to the earlier role of "King's Painter". Other painters, for example Nicholas Hilliard had similar roles without the title, which seems to have been first used for Anthony van Dyck in 1632.

The following is a partial list of painters (in chronological order) who held the appointment of Principal Painter in Ordinary to the King, or Queen:

Born 16th or 17th Century[edit]

  • Sir Anthony Van Dyck (1599–1641) (born Flemish) Principal Painter in Ordinary to King Charles I and his Queen (1632, at a £200 per annum retainer, plus payment for pictures made)
  • Sir Peter Lely (Dutch, 1618–1680) Principal Painter in Ordinary to King Charles II (1661, also £200 per annum)
  • Sir Godfrey Kneller (German, 1646–1723) Principal Painter in Ordinary to the King (1680–1723)
  • William Kent (1685–1748) Principal Painter in Ordinary to the King (1723–48), who was mainly a designer of interior decorations.

Born 18th Century[edit]

  • John Shackleton (1714–1767) Principal Painter in Ordinary to King George II and then King George III
  • Allan Ramsay (1713–1784) Principal Painter in Ordinary to the King (1761–84)
  • Sir Joshua Reynolds (1723–1792) Principal Painter in Ordinary to the King
  • Sir Thomas Lawrence (1760–1830) Principal Painter in Ordinary to the King
  • Sir David Wilkie (1785–1841) Principal Painter in Ordinary to the King William IV and then Queen Victoria
  • Sir George Hayter (1792–1871) Principal Painter in Ordinary to Queen Victoria 1841–71

Born 19th Century[edit]

  • James Sant (1820–1916) Principal Painter in Ordinary to Queen Victoria 1871–1901

Self portrait gallery[edit]

Similar titles[edit]

Other positions created included the Flower Painter in Ordinary (during the reigns of Queen Adelaide and Queen Victoria), Miniature Painter in Ordinary, and Marine Painter in Ordinary.

See also[edit]