Agnes Impel (d. after 1652), Lady Astley, in Mourning Dress

Image credit: National Trust Images

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A half-length portrait, facing forward, dressed in black, with lace collar and cuffs, holding an enclosed watch and wearing jet earrings and a pearl necklace.

The sitter was a Dutch heiress from Bloumerckem, who, before 1619, married Sir Jacob Astley (1579–1652), 1st Baron Astley of Reading. He was commanding a company in the Anglo-Dutch brigade fighting the Spanish in the Low Countries. She bore him two sons and a daughter. The baronetcy became extinct in 1668 on the death of their grandson, who died without children.

She holds what is probably an open prayer-book, which has been inscribed with the date 1640. The enclosed watch she holds is a symbol of mortality. She is clothed in mourning dress, but is not a widow.

National Trust, Seaton Delaval

Seaton Sluice


Agnes Impel (d. after 1652), Lady Astley, in Mourning Dress




oil on canvas


H 73.5 x W 61 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

on loan from Lord Hastings

Work type


Inscription description

At top: in flowing white script: Agnes Imple / Wife of / Jacob Ld Astley


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Normally on display at

National Trust, Seaton Delaval

The Avenue, Seaton Sluice, Northumberland NE26 4QR England

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