John Bettes

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A Man in a Black Cap

1545
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Additional Information

This is the earliest painting in the Tate collection and unusually for its time is signed on the back. The portrait was part of the collection at Brome Hall, Suffolk, handed down from Henry VIII's physician William Butts. The sitter may be Butts's third son, Edmund, who inherited the property the year the painting was made. The style is reminiscent of Holbein - the background was originally painted in blue, a colour often used by him, but Bettes used ‘smalt’, essentially ground glass which, as in this instance, turns ginger brown when exposed to light.
  • Artist John Bettes
  • Artwork A Man in a Black Cap
  • Image size 47 x 41 cm
  • Date of work 1545
  • Credit Oil paint on oak 47 x 41 cm
Very little is known about the life of this 16th century painter other than that he was living in Westminster in 1556. He is first recorded as doing decorative works at Whitehall Palace for Henry Vlll in 1531. Payments to him from Queen Catherine of Aragon for painting miniature portraits, (lymning), of her and the King are documented in her accounts of 1546/47. It is considered a possibility that he may have worked with Hans Holbein the younger who re-designed the public images at the court.
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Delivery & returns

Delivery & returns

DELIVERY TIMES

We aim to deliver custom prints within 2-4 weeks.

As each print is handmade to order they take a little longer to prepare. We’ll dispatch your order as soon as it is ready, separately from any other items.

UNFRAMED PRINTS DELIVERY CHARGES

UK — £3.60 per order

Europe — £12.00 per order

Rest of world — £28.00 per order

FRAMED & CANVAS PRINTS DELIVERY CHARGES

UK — £7.50 per print

Europe — £20.00 per print

Rest of world — £50.00 per print

We currently offer free standard delivery on all UK orders over £50. Here’s more information on delivery.

REFUNDS & RETURNS

As custom prints are made to order, unfortunately we cannot accept returns if you have changed your mind or made a mistake.

If we have made a mistake, or there is a problem with your order, then please contact our customer service team at shop.online@tate.org.uk or by phone on +44 (0)20 7887 8888 (Monday – Friday, 9.45–18.00).

Here’s more information on refunds & returns.

Delivery & returns

DELIVERY TIMES

We aim to deliver custom prints within 2-4 weeks.

As each print is handmade to order they take a little longer to prepare. We’ll dispatch your order as soon as it is ready, separately from any other items.

UNFRAMED PRINTS DELIVERY CHARGES

UK — £3.60 per order

Europe — £12.00 per order

Rest of world — £28.00 per order

FRAMED & CANVAS PRINTS DELIVERY CHARGES

UK — £7.50 per print

Europe — £20.00 per print

Rest of world — £50.00 per print

We currently offer free standard delivery on all UK orders over £50. Here’s more information on delivery.

REFUNDS & RETURNS

As custom prints are made to order, unfortunately we cannot accept returns if you have changed your mind or made a mistake.

If we have made a mistake, or there is a problem with your order, then please contact our customer service team at shop.online@tate.org.uk or by phone on +44 (0)20 7887 8888 (Monday – Friday, 9.45–18.00).

Here’s more information on refunds & returns.