Portraits of Shakespeare
There are several portraits and miniatures of Shakespeare. Here is some information about the most important:
1) Chandos Portrait. The Chandos portrait of Shakespeare is named after its owners, the Dukes of Chandos. Some believe that Shakespeare’s friend and fellow actor Richard Burbage painted it and gave it to Joseph Taylor, an actor with the King’s Men. Taylor then left the painting to William Davenant, the man who claimed to be Shakespeare’s illegitimate son. However, this theory cannot be supported with historical evidence. The Chandos portrait was no doubt painted when Shakespeare was alive, unlike the posthumous painting, the Droeshout. Some critics argue that the painting cannot be of Shakespeare. In 1856 it became the property of Britain’s National Portrait Gallery. 2) The Droeshout Portrait. Created by the English engraver Martin Droeshout, this picture appears on the cover of the First Folio, and is one of only two images of the Bard considered genuine (the other being the Stratford Monument also called the Bust of Shakespeare). It is unlikely that Shakespeare posed for Droeshout and the artist probably worked from another painting that has long since disappeared.