|Method||Copper engraving and stipple|
|Dimensions||Image 155 x 92 mm, Sheet 162 x 98 mm|
A half length portrait of Jane Lane, later Lady Jane Fisher, turned right, gazing at the viewer, framed in an oval, with her name on a pedestal underneath the portrait. She is wearing a voluminous dress, with lace trimmings, her hair hanging in loose curls, fastened with a brooch, and wearing a pearl necklace.
Jane (nee Lane) Fisher (c. 1613-1689) was born in Staffordshire, the daughter of Thomas Lane and Anne Bagot. Her brother, John Lane, had been a colonel to the Royalist Army and was in communication with King Charles II, who was in hiding after the English Civil War, through Lord Wilmot. In 1651, Jane had obtained a military pass to travel to Bristol with a servant and her cousin, to visit a family member who was expecting a baby. The King disguised himself as Jane's servant and travelled with her to Bristol, from where he sailed to France. This had been a dangerous action, as patrols were on the lookout for the King, and Jane had been found aiding his escape, she would have been executed. About a month after the escape, the Council State suspected that she might have been involved with the King's escape, and Jane fled to France herself, where she was welcomed at the exiled court. King Charles was later restored to the crown, and bestowed Jane with an annual pension and many personal gifts throughout her life. In 1662 she married Sir Clement Fisher, and became Lady Fisher.
George Vertue (1684-1756) was an antiquary and engraver. He was born in the parish of St. Martin-in-the-Fields, London. Vertue was apprenticed to a silver engraver and later to the Flemish engraver Michael Vandergucht. His early work included plates after Kneller, whose academy he attended from 1711. Vertue had a deep interest in antiquarian research, and much of his work was devoted to the subject. He also served as the official engraver to the Society of Antiquaries (1717-56). From 1713 onwards, Vertue dedicated his research to the details of the history of British art, which resulted in an extensive collection of notebooks now in the British Library. The contents of these notebooks were the basis of Horace Walpole's 1762 'Anecdotes of Painting'. There are approximately five hundred portraits attributed to Vertue, and an equivalent number of published plates devoted to antiquarian subjects.
Ex. Col.: Earl de Grey
O' Donoghue 1
Condition: Trimmed within plate mark, and tipped to album page. Manuscript inscription to lower right edge 'Vertue sc.'.