Vivienne Westbrook
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Ralegh’s image in art
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In response to an internet search for 'Sir Walter Ralegh in art', the 'Public Domain Clip Art' website retrieves two items: the first by Nicholas Hilliard and the second by 'H' monogrammist. Hilliard's miniature of Ralegh, earlier thought to be Henry Howard, was painted in 1585 at the height of Ralegh's influence with Queen Elizabeth I. In the portrait by 'H' monogrammist, executed in 1588, the NPG panel draws attention to Ralegh's pearls: 'Ralegh's dramatic costume is lavishly embellished with pearls, symbols of purity and much favoured by Elizabeth I. Agnes Latham was to declare in her opening remarks to her 1929 edition of Ralegh's poems that 'it is difficult to believe in Walter Ralegh. Among the treatments of Ralegh's life in T. N. Brushfield's bibliography was the famous assessment of Ralegh's undertakings in Ireland by John Pope Hennessy.

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