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George Frideric Handel 1685-1759: M.67 & A-D-1937

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Object information

Current Location: In storage


George Frideric Handel 1685-1759


Miniaturist: Craft, William Hopkins (After)
Box maker: Unknown




Wood (possibly maple) box, the lid set with a portrait miniature of George Frederick Handel painted in enamel on copper under glass, with a turned wood (possibly oak) case and a pamplet

Turned wood (possibly maple) box, the top of the lid set with a portrait miniature painted in enamel on copper under glass; and a turned wood (possibly oak) case. The turned circular box has straight sides which evert slightly at the lid and base. The pull-off lid (A) is almost flat; set in the centre, in a gilt metal mount, is an oval portrait miniature of George Frideric Handel. The composer faces three-quarters to the left, and wears a long full-bottomed wig. His stock is largely covered by his dull purple coat which has a gold lace border. The background is brown to purple. The interior of the box was painted green, but most of the paint has crumbled. Set inside the lid is a circular brass plaque inscribed 'This Box / surmounted by a Miniature / of / George Frederick Handel / (by his Cotemporary (sic) Zincke / was presented to the Committee of / the / Sacred Harmonic Society / the true Conservators of the Fame of that / illustrious Musician / by / J.N. Harrison, B.A., / Caius Coll Camb / (one of its earliest Members / MDCCCXLI'. The case (B & C) is circular with fluted sides and the pull-off lid is carved with raised concentric rings. The interior is lined with red velvet. Inside is a pamphlet (D) titled: 'A FEW FACTS / IN THE / LIFE OF HANDEL / BY / WILLIAM HUTCHINS CALLCOTT. / EXTRACTED FROM HIS MUSICAL WORK / "The Handel Album" / WITH ADDITIONAL ANECDOTES / "We desire to know everything about a great man." / Schoelcher's Life of Handel / LONDON / LONGMAN, BROWN & CO., PATERNOSTER ROW, / AND C. LONSDALE, 26 OLD BOND STREET. / 1859 / Price Sixpence


History note: John Newman Harrison (of the Sacred Harmonic Society 1841 until its dissolution in 1882); by descent through his son the Rev. John Newman to Norah Harrison

Legal notes

Given by Norah Harrison

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Given (1937-06-21) by Harrison, Norah


19th Century, Early#
1800 - 1841


The miniature after William H. Craft, was taken from the portrait by Thomas Hudson in the National Portrait Gallery. In the 19th century the miniature was attributed to Christian Friedrich Zincke.

School or Style


People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Box composed of wood
Case composed of wood
Mount composed of metal
Miniature composed of enamel copper Height 4.8 cm Width 4.3 cm
Interior Of Box composed of paint
Plaque composed of copper
Surface Of Mount composed of gold
Interior Of Case composed of velvet
Cover composed of glass
Box And Lid Diameter 12.9 cm Height 5.4 cm
Case And Lid Diameter 17.7 cm Height 9.5 cm
Pamphlet Length 14 cm Width 9.5 cm

Inscription or legends present

  • Text: This box / sumounted by a Miniature / of / George Frederick Handel / (by his Cotemporary Zincke) / was presented to the Committee of / the / Sacred Harmonic Society / the true Conservators of the Fame of that / illustrious Musician / by / J.N. Harrison, B.V. / Caius Coll. Camb / (One of its earliest Members / MDCCCXLI)
  • Location: Inside the lid
  • Method of creation: Engraved
  • Type: Inscription
  • Text: Fitzwilliam Museum / Cambridge / Presented by / Miss Norah Harrison / October 1937
  • Location: Inside the base of the box
  • Method of creation: Printed and written in black ink and glued
  • Type: Paper label

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: M.67 & A-D-1937
Primary reference Number: 17825
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Wednesday 20 March 2019 Last processed: Monday 18 December 2023

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Paintings, Drawings and Prints

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "George Frideric Handel 1685-1759" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-06-21 22:54:59

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