National Trust, Erddig

Image credit: National Trust Images/Rupert Truman

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Erdigg, a fine Welsh early eighteenth-century country house, after many years of negotiation and compensation from the National Coal Board, who had caused subsidence to the property by mining, was finally handed over to the National Trust by Philip Yorke III (1905–1978), in 1973. Its picture collection is most celebrated for its servant portraits (which actually include those of estate staff, and a butcher-cum-publican). They were painted in two batches: by John Walters of Denbigh for Philip Yorke I (1743–1804), between 1791 and 1796, including the adapted portrait of an otherwise unknown John Hanby (who was probably a white man) at the age of 25 into an imaginary portrait of a dimly-remembered black coachboy of an earlier owner of the house, John Meller (1665–1733) and by William Jones, in 1830, for Simon Yorke II (1771–1834). There are also commissioned portraits by Cotes, Gainsborough and Wheatley, and Dutch school pictures inherited, in 1770, from a rich maternal uncle, James Hutton of Newnham, Hertfordshire and Park Lane.

Wrexham (Wrecsam) LL13 0YT Wales

01978 355314

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