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The Richard III Connection

I have long been interested in genealogy and, like most family historians, the Holy Grail is to connect my family to Royalty, especially Richard III! Unfortunately this is nearly impossible*, but I have done it in an indirect way.

I found out that my 4 x great grandfather was a portrait painter by the name of Thomas Webster Snellgrove (22.7.1780 – 28.3.1830). When I first discovered him a few years ago, I did a search for the name on Google, only to find nothing at all.

However, I have since discovered some new information and was delighted to find out that one of his miniature paintings, in oils on ivory and dated circa 1805, is stored in the archives of the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. I was even more delighted to discover that the miniature is of an actor called George Frederick Cooke and that it shows him portraying Richard III! OK, he does not look anything like the reconstruction or any of the known portraits of Richard that we know of currently, nor is the costume authentically of the period, but it’s the only connection I have, so I’m happy with it!

Picture of ivory miniature of Cooke's portrayal of Richard III by Thomas Snellgrove

Cooke playing Richard III by Snellgrove

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11 thoughts on “The Richard III Connection

  1. Cory on said:

    Do you have a picture of your grandfather’s portrait by chance?


  2. No, my 4 x gt grandfather was the artist and although he did some self-portraits, I haven’t been able to find them


  3. Pingback: Uncle Richard? | murreyandblue

  4. Kenyon elliott on said:

    I own a large painting of British vcalvery officer painted “after Waterloo” by Thomas snellgrove. Are you interested in seeing photo
    Back if painting is of Capt James P M kenyon

    Liked by 1 person

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