James I (1566–1625)

Image credit: St Mary's Guildhall

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This portrait was purchased for the city together with the portrait of King Charles I for £6 in 1626. The city's strongest connection with King James I is through his daughter, Princess Elizabeth, who was sent to be to be educated at Coombe Abbey, the then home of Sir John Harrington. The Princess remained at Coombe for five years, although during the unrest of the Gunpowder Plot spent some time under heavy guard at residencies within the city walls. In 1604 Princess Elizabeth had been lavishly entertained at the Guildhall, and was presented with a gift of a silver-gilt cup and cover that was over 2 feet tall, and too heavy for her to lift. King James I visited the city in 1617, when a grand banquet was held in his honour at the Guildhall. The painting shows strong similarities to a portait of James I by Daniel Mytens (now held at the National Portrait Gallery), and is probably a version after this original.

St Mary’s Guildhall, Coventry



James I (1566–1625)




oil on canvas


H 109 x W 91 cm

Accession number


Work type



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Normally on display at

St Mary’s Guildhall, Coventry

Bayley Lane, Coventry, West Midlands CV1 5RN England

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