Lady Hester Cholmondeley, née Bellingham (1763-1844), wearing white dress, fichu and shawl with frilled trim, her powdered hair dressed with a white bandeau by Henry Edridge

Bonham's lot notes have this (the marriage date and coiffure agree), "Lady Hester was also portrayed in two further portrait miniatures, one given to Ozias Humphry that appeared in Christie's Pierpont Morgan Sale of 24-27 June, 1935, lot 349 (illustrated catalogue opp.p.160), which compares very closely to the present lot; and a portrait by William Grimaldi in the National Gallery of Ireland (number 19283) (see. P. Caffrey, Treasures to Hold, Irish and English Miniatures 1650-1850 from the National Gallery of Ireland Collection, 2000, p.80.

Hester Frances Cholmondeley was the youngest daughter of the Hon. Reverend Robert Cholmondeley and his wife, Mary Woffington, sister of the celebrated actress Peg Woffington... They were married in 1746. Hester's grandfather was George 3rd Earl of Cholmondeley K.B., P.C. (1703–1770). In 1783, Hester married Sir William Bellingham, 1st Baronet (c. 1756–1826), who was an Irish-born British politician.

Bellingham served as MP for Reigate in Surrey between 1784 and 1789 before his appointment as Commissioner for the victualling of the Navy. As a Commissioner, he oversaw the provisioning of George Vancouver's expedition along the West Coast of North America. Although he never saw the Pacific Ocean himself, Bellingham Bay (and subsequently Bellingham, Washington) was named by Vancouver in his honour.

William later became Private Secretary to the Rt. Hon. William Pitt and was made a Baronet in 1796. Because William and Hester didn't have any children, a special order was bestowed that enabled the title to pass to his brothers and their sons. Upon, his death, William was succeeded by his nephew Alan."

I wondered about Bellingham Washington and the Bellinghams until I read this.

Lady Mary wears a big fichu, a curly coiffure, and a simple dress in this Edridge miniature portrait.

Keywords:  Edridge, Cholmondeley family, Bellingham family, British, curly coiffure, hair band, vee neckline, fichu, tight sleeves, wrap


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