The True Effigies of Hezekiah Holland

Minister of the Gospell at Sutton Valance in Kent. This is the frontispiece from his tome entitled An exposition, or, A short, but full, plaine, and perfect epitome of the most choice commentaries upon the Revelation of Saint John, published in 1650. Amongst other bombshells, the book revealed that the end of the world was 216 years away. A comforting result for Hezekiah, but not so much for us. The Reverend Holland was originally from Ireland and an independent cleric who had been appointed a living by Parliament when the previous incumbent Robert Smith was ousted for his Royalist leanings.

The engraving shows a few quirky details, not least the overlarge hand emerging from the folds of his gown holding a book and the odd way his plain falling band corners cross over. Perhaps this is a bit more true to life than the perfect versions we usually see. It gives the minister a bit more character I think. He is also wearing a plain black day cap and a short tabbed doublet of the kind that had been generally worn, but had not been the height of fashion, since the 1630s at least. The tassels on his band strings are nice too.

Screen Shot 2014-02-27 at 07.32.52

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