Thomas Beach 1738 (Milton Abbas)-1806 (Dorchester)

Thomas Beach 1738 (Milton Abbas)-1806 (Dorchester)
Offered by: Strachan Fine Art Ltd.
Dealer reference: S00205

Description

The Rev. Sir Edward Ernle, 7th Baronet (1712-1787) of Brimslade Park, nr. Marlborough.
Signed and dated 1783.
Oil on canvas, 29 x 24 ins, 73.66 x 60.96 cms.
Inscribed “Sir Edward Ernle Baronet of Brimslade Wiltshire”

The Rev. Sir Edward Ernle 1712-1787 was the 7th and last baronet, dying without issue in 1787 at the age of 75. He was rector of Arlington, Berkshire but he still lived in Brimslade House which the Ernles had occupied since 1699. His will is in the National Archives.

His branch of the Ernle family descended from Edward Ernle, son of Michael Ernle, Esq., of Bourton (died 1595), by his second wife, Susan Hungerford, daughter of Sir Walter Hungerford, Kt, of Farley Castle, Somerset, a granddaughter of the executed Walter, Lord Hungerford. Baptised at Calne in 1587, Edward Ernle, and his wife Gertrude St Lowe, were progenitors of the Ernle Baronets of Etchilhampton, alias Ashlington, Wiltshire, and the 'self-styled' Ernle baronets of Brimslade Park. It was their son, Sir Walter Ernle, Knight, of Etchilhampton, who was created a baronet shortly after the Restoration by King Charles II on 2 February 1660/1, as Sir Walter Ernle, 1st Baronet. Passing first through his own heirs, the baronetcy was used, with doubtful authority, according to The Complete Baronetage, by the Brimslade Park branch of the family established by his younger brother, Michael Ernle, gent., of Brimslade. That line, too, died out, and the soi-disant baronet's dignities, real or imagined, were finally extinguished with the death in 1787 of the Reverend Sir Edward Ernle, 7th Baronet.

Brimslade House was built in the early 17th century. It was on an L plan and timber-framed and had principal south and west fronts each with two gables. The east range, which was the longer and had a central porch, was extended eastwards in the mid-17th century. In the early 18th century a new staircase was built in the centre of the west range, and the two principal rooms in the east range were refitted. The timber-framed walls of the house have been partly covered by hung tiles and partly rebuilt in brick. From 1699 to 1787 the house was occupied successively by Michael Ernle, his son Edward (d. 1734), Sir Michael Ernle, Bt. (d. 1771), and Sir Edward Ernle, Bt. (d. 1787).
By 1773 the head stream of the Avon, on the south bank of which Brimslade House stands, had been dammed to make ornamental canals, and a small park had been made around the house. The canals were destroyed when the Kennet & Avon canal was built along the course of the stream c. 1807. A formal garden survived on the north side of the canal in 1811, but in the 19th century the house was a farmhouse and the park was not preserved.

Thomas Beach studied with Reynolds 1760-62 and then moved to Bath. He developed the routine of leaving his home in Bath in June on tour and effectively working as an itinerant portrait painter of the nobility and gentry in the southern counties. The Holburne Museum has a good example in his group portrait of the Stapleton family, 1789.

Height: 29.00inch (73.66 cm)
Width: 24.00inch (60.96 cm)

Condition

Exceptionally good. Unlined canvas on original stretcher and in original carved wood frame.

Date

1783

Price

£4,500.00

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