Sir Dudley Digges

Painted again by Cornelius Johnson sometime before he died in 1639, Sir Dudley was a well travelled diplomat, courtier and member of Parliament. He was also heavily involved in overseas trade and was a “Virginia Adventurer”, investing money in the Virginia Company of London. What I like about this portrait is the detail of his shirt, which has a falling band seemingly directly attached directly to the body of the shirt and the bobbin lace runs all around the collar and extends down the neck opening. This kind of decoration would not be seen when worn under a doublet, but was presumably designed for when the shirt was worn as shown, indoors under a loose coat or fur wrap as seen here. Definitely a high status shirt!

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