The three surviving versions of the iconic Armada Portrait of Elizabeth I are on public display together in a free exhibition until 31 August at the Queen’s House at Royal Museums Greenwich. The exhibition, entitled Faces of a Queen: The Armada Portraits of Elizabeth I, is the first time the paintings have been displayed together in their 430-year history.
One of the most iconic images in British history, the Armada Portrait commemorates the most famous conflict in Elizabeth’s reign, the Spanish Armada’s failed attempt to invade England in 1588. Royal Museums Greenwich is showcasing its own version of the Armada Portrait alongside the two other surviving versions, from the collections of Woburn Abbey and the National Portrait Gallery.
All three versions of the Armada Portrait are believed to have been painted shortly after the event, circa 1588. Whilst copies and derivatives of the portrait pattern have been made over the centuries, the three portraits that are united at the Queen’s House are the only contemporary versions in existence and the only three featuring seascapes that depict episodes from the Spanish Armada in the background.
The 17th century Queen’s House, designed by Inigo Jones, was the first Classical building in England – it is known for its perfectly proportioned Great Hall, original marble floor and beautiful Tulip staircase. It forms an important part of the UNESCO Maritime Greenwich World Heritage Site.
Group packages* available include:
Queen’s House Guided Tour + Cream Tea at National Maritime Museum, £12.50 per person
Queen’s House Guided Tour + Entry to Cutty Sark,£22.50 per person
Queen’s House Guided Tour + Entry to Cutty Sark + Cream Tea at National Maritime Museum, £27.50 per person
*Offers are valid for groups of 15+ people. Offers are valid for visits Mon-Fri. Offers must be pre-booked. The above rates are commissionable.
For more information, contact the Royal Museums Greenwich Travel Trade team at [email protected]