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William Christian of Ronaldsway ('Illiam Dhone')

Date made: 17th century

Artist: unknown artist

Description: Full length portrait, formerly displayed at Workington Hall, Cumberland (the Christian Curwen estate) to where it is said to have been moved from Milntown, Isle of Man (the Christian estate).

William Christian is the most iconic figure in Manx political history. As the Earl of Derby's most trusted lieutenant, he was charged with the defence of the Isle of Man against Parliamentary forces. Yet, in 1651 he negotiated the surrender of the Island against the wishes of the Earl's widow, in exchange for certain guarantees. Regarded as a traitor by the Derby family, after the Restoration he was tried and executed in 1663. In recent years however he has been reconstructed as a Manx patriot by nationalist elements, and the site of his death at Hango Hill is now the location for an annual nationalist gathering.

Frame is late seventeenth/ early eighteenth century and British. It is carved with gadrooned ornament briefly popular in furniture and frames (e.g. RCIN 401226 at the Royal Collection in London) at that time.

Measurements: unframed artwork: 300 cm x 150 cm

Materials: oil on canvas

Object name: painting

Collection: Art Collection

ID number: 1954-6561

Subject tags : #MM100


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