Royal Museums Greenwich, a group of four London museums has paid £10.3 million ($13.6 million) to keep a defining portrait of England’s queen Elizabeth I in Britain. The National Maritime Museum and the Art Fund managed to raise the required amount to acquire it for the national collection. The “Armada portrait” was owned by Sir Francis Drake and has been passed down through his family with the current owners now deciding to sell.
This portrait, painted around 1590 by an unknown artist, is the defining image of queen Elizabeth in her pomp.
It shows the monarch wearing a gold embroidered and jewelled dress with her hand resting on a globe, while the English fleet enjoys calm waters and the approaching Spanish fleet is wrecked in a storm.
The painting will be displayed inside the Queen’s House on the site of the former Greenwich Palace, Elizabeth’s 1533 birthplace.