Sir Peter Lely (1618-1680)

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Lely painting, Two Ladies from the Lake Family

Two Ladies from the Lake Family

Sir Peter Lely was a 17th century English painter. Lely was born in the Netherlands and painted in the Baroque style. Lely was the most popular portrait painter in England from the 1640′s until his death in 1680.

Lely painting, Portrait of the Dutchess of Cleveland with her Son

Portrait of the Dutchess of Cleveland with her Son

Lely was a collector of art just as much as he was a creator of art, and had a collection of drawings made by other artists.

Lely painting, Musicians


Many of Lely’s early Dutch paintings were of religious or mythological themes, as well as pastoral landscapes. He was appointed as Charles II’s principal painter in 1661, and was in high demand by British society. He was highly prolific and today, Lely’s paintings are housed in prominent collections such as Windsor Castle, and perhaps in your own home.

Lely painting, Eleanor Gwyn

Lely, Elizabeth, Countess of Kildaire (ca. 1679) oil on canvas, 123,4 x 100 cm, Tate Britain.

Still wondering about a 17th century portrait in your family collection? Contact us…it could be by Sir Peter Lely.