Richard Goodricke of Ribston, Yorkshire (1560 - 1601)

Cornelis Ketel
1548 – 1616

Richard Goodricke of Ribston, Yorkshire (1560 - 1601)

Painted circa 1578

Oil on Panel: 42 3/8 x 32 3/8 inches, 106 x 81 cm



  • with The Weiss Gallery, 2004, sold to
  • The Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide

This is very rare example of a fully signed Elizabethan portrait. Our portrait is also remarkable because the artist Ketel includes a record of an historical event, with the ball of flames and the Latin motto in the upper right ‘doersum nunquam’ (never downwards) referring to the spectacular Great Comet of 1577, which first appeared in Europe. It was one of the brightest recorded in history and remained visible up until January 1578. Richard may well have commissioned this portrait to mark his accession to adulthood, which coincided with this astronomical wonder. More significantly, it is clear that Richard wished to be seen, and indeed viewed himself, as a man on the ascent.

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