Going out: See how it's done, by a Tudor favourite

17th January 2003 at 00:00

Before Holbein gave us the images of Henry VIII by which most people recognise him, he painted the monarch's friend Sir Henry Guildford and his wife, Mary Wotton.

The portraits, completed in 1527, are reunited at the National Gallery; Sir Henry from the Queen's collection, his wife from the St Louis Art Museum, Missouri.

Both are dressed in Tudor court style, providing examples of high society for anyone studying the period.

Holbein came to England with letters of recommendation from the scholar Erasmus, whose portrait is also on show, along with Holbein's preparatory chalk drawings for the Guildford portraits, which will give students an insight into his methods.

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