caption

Charles Jervas, Richard Lumley, 2nd Earl of Scarborough (1686–1740)

Photo courtesy of Tom St Aubyn (All rights reserved)

Details

Country House
Raynham Hall
Title(s)
Richard Lumley, 2nd Earl of Scarborough (1686–1740)
Date
c.1724–5
Location
The Belisarius Room
Medium and support
Oil on canvas
Dimensions
Overall height: 233 cm, Overall width: 145 cm
Artist
Charles Jervas (1675-1739)
Catalogue Number
RN73

Description

Richard Lumley, Whig politician, courtier and member of the Kit-cat Club, was baptised on 30 November 1686, the second son of the 1st Earl of Scarborough. Following the death of his elder brother he succeeded to his father’s titles in 1721. He served as MP for East Grinstead from 1708 and Arundel from 1710, entering the House of Lords as Viscount Lumley in 1715, where Lord Hervey noted that he was ‘one of the best speakers of his time . . . clear in his matter, forcible in his expression.1

Scarborough was a loyal supporter of George II, serving as his master of the horse from 1714 to 1734. In this capacity he was a member of Walpole’s cabinet from 1727; he was also appointed privy councillor the same year. The royal friendship, and Scarborough’s life, ended abruptly on 29 January 1740, the eve of his marriage to Isabella, Dowager Duchess of Manchester, who was found to have betrayed Scarborough’s confidence by disclosing a state secret. At home that evening he shot himself through the mouth, reputedly in shame.

This full-length portrait of Scarborough in Garter robes was part of an exchange of portraits with Charles, 2nd Viscount Townshend, commemorating their installation as knights of the Garter on 9 July 1724. A bill from Jervas in the Townshend archives records ‘Lord Townshend in Garter robes for Ld Scarborough £42–00’. Jervas has used foreshortening to ensure that the figure appears in proportion when viewed from below. It has hung on high on the walls of the Belisarius Room since at least 1908 and probably since the room was completed in the 1730s.

by Amy Lim

Footnotes

  1. Hervey, 1848, vol. 1, p. 95.

    1

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