First Royal Charter of the Royal Society

    15 July 1662
    Charles II (1630 - 1685, British)
    Unknown, Artist
    Object type
    Archive reference number
    height (painting): 643mm
    width (painting): 868mm
    Content object
    Top left, inside a calligraphic 'C', is a fine ink and wash portrait of Charles II, surrounded by calligraphic flourishes. In the top centre is the royal coat of arms, flanked by a tulip and carnation in ink and wash. The top border further includes drawings of a plant with fruits, flowers and insects. The eagle whose wing spreads beyond the right-hand border is copied from a model book of birds, Diversae avium species (1654), designed by Francis Barlow, etched by Wenceslaus Hollar and issued by Peter Stent. To the sides are acanthus-style scrolls with floral patterns in ink, wash and body colour. At the bottom left, close to the binding, is a signature of the scribe, 'F. B[eale]'.

    The total cost of the Royal Patent was £88 18 s. 8d. to the Royal Society (paid between February and August 1662).
    Object history
    For the English translation of the Charter, see The Record of the Royal Society of London, 4th edn (London: The Royal Society, 1940), pp. 226-37.
    Related fellows
    Charles II (1630 - 1685, British)
    Associated place
    <The World>
       > Europe
          > United Kingdom
    ©The Royal Society
    Image number
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