King Charles I (1600–1649) ; Possibly a gift of the king to Lady Mary Villiers (1622–1685) ; By inheritance to George Legge (1648–1691), 1st baron Dartmouth; William Legge (1730–1801), 2nd earl of Dartmouth, Sandwell Hall, Staffordshire; William Legge (1881–1958), 7th earl of Dartmouth, Patshull Park, Staffordshire; By descent to Lady Elizabeth Basset née Legge (1908–2000); Phillips, London, July 10, 2001, lot 123; Historical Portraits, London; Acquired by the Putnam Foundation, 2005
 van Dyck, who was court painter for King Charles I and his wife, Queen Henrietta Maria, apparently executed this portrait of Lady Mary at the request of the king, in whose collection the portrait once hung. On the verso of the canvas are stamped the letters CR surmounted by a crown. This cipher was placed only on paintings in Charles I’s personal art collection, on the authority of Abraham van der Doort, keeper of the king’s pictures. This mark was discovered in 2002, when an old lining was removed during the painting’s conservation. The conservation treatment was undertaken after the painting had been acquired by the art gallery Historical Portraits, London. This portrait is probably the painting referred to in Abraham van der Doort’s catalogue of the collections of Charles I as “A Peece of the Dutchesse of Lenox before she was married By Sir Anthony Vandike.”
 Since this portrait was not in the royal collection at the time of the king’s death in 1649, the probability is strong that Charles I presented it to Lady Mary, perhaps replacing it with another work by van Dyck at the time of her subsequent marriage to James Stuart in 1637.