The Tudors: Art and Majesty in Renaissance England

October 10th, 2022 - January 8th, 2023
Previously on view at The Met Fifth Avenue, Gallery 899
Free with Museum admission

England under the volatile Tudor dynasty was a thriving home for the arts. An international community of artists and merchants, many of them religious refugees, navigated the high-stakes demands of royal patrons, including England’s first two reigning queens. Against the backdrop of shifting political relationships with mainland Europe, Tudor artistic patronage legitimized, promoted, and stabilized a series of tumultuous reigns, from Henry VII’s seizure of the throne in 1485 to the death of his granddaughter Elizabeth I in 1603. The Tudor courts were truly cosmopolitan, boasting the work of Florentine sculptors, German painters, Flemish weavers, and Europe’s best armorers, goldsmiths, and printers, while also contributing to the emergence of a distinctly English style. This exhibition will trace the transformation of the arts in Tudor England through more than 100 objects—including iconic portraits, spectacular tapestries, manuscripts, sculpture, and armor—from both The Met collection and international lenders.

Accompanied by a catalogue.

To access the booklet of all in-gallery labels, click here.

The exhibition is made possible by Alice Cary Brown and W.L. Lyons Brown, Frank Richardson and Kimba Wood, Barbara A. Wolfe, the Diane Carol Brandt Fund, The Coby Foundation, Ltd., The Klesch Collection, Ann M. Spruill and Daniel H. Cantwell, and Sharon Wee and Tracy Fu.

This exhibition is supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities.

It is organized by The Metropolitan Museum of Art and The Cleveland Museum of Art, in collaboration with the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

The catalogue is made possible by the Diane W. and James E. Burke Fund.

Additional support is provided by the Hata International Foundation and the Samuel H. Kress Foundation.

Audio Guide

Hear about the portraits of some of the most famous Tudor figures alongside the superb decorative arts produced during this period.

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Henry VII, Netherlandish Painter  Netherlandish, Oil on panel
Unknown Netherlandish Painter
Henry VIII, Hans Holbein the Younger  German, Oil on panel
Hans Holbein the Younger (German, Augsburg 1497/98–1543 London)
ca. 1537
Mary I, Hans Eworth  Flemish, Oil on panel
Hans Eworth (Flemish, ca. 1520–1574)
Elizabeth I ("The Sieve Portrait"), Quentin Metsys the Younger  Netherlandish, Oil on canvas
Quentin Metsys the Younger (Netherlandish, Antwerp 1543–1589 Frankfurt)
The "Sea-Dog" Table, Jacques Androuet Du Cerceau  French, Walnut wood, gilded silver, marbled inlay
Designed after Jacques Androuet Du Cerceau (French, Paris 1510/12–1585 Annecy)
ca. 1575
Saint Paul Directing the Burning of the Heathen Books, from a nine-piece set of the Life of Saint Paul, Pieter Coecke van Aelst  Netherlandish, Wool, silk, silver and gilded silver metal-wrapped threads
Designed by Pieter Coecke van Aelst (Netherlandish, Aelst 1502–1550 Brussels)
Perhaps woven under the direction of Paulus van Oppenem (Flemish)
Before 1539
Portrait Bust of John Fisher, Bishop of Rochester, Pietro Torrigiano  Italian, Polychrome terracotta, British
Pietro Torrigiano (Italian, Florence 1472–1528 Seville)
Sir Thomas More, Hans Holbein the Younger  German, Oil on panel
Hans Holbein the Younger (German, Augsburg 1497/98–1543 London)
'Abd al-Wahid bin Mas'ood bin Mohammad 'Annouri, Unknown English Artist, Oil on panel
Unknown English Artist
Armor Garniture of George Clifford (1558–1605), 
Third Earl of Cumberland, Jacob Halder  British, Steel, gold, leather, textile, British, Greenwich
Made under the direction of Jacob Halder (British, master armorer at the royal workshops at Greenwich, documented in England 1558–1608)
Henry VII Cope, Velvet cloth-of-gold, brocaded with loops of silver-gilt and silver; embroidery on tabby linen in silver-gilt thread and silk
Elizabeth I ("The Ditchley Portrait"), Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger  Flemish, Oil on canvas
Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger (Flemish, Bruges 1561–1635/36 London)
ca. 1592
Elizabeth I ("The Rainbow Portrait"), Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger  Flemish, Oil on canvas
Attributed to Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger (Flemish, Bruges 1561–1635/36 London)
ca. 1602
Henry Frederick (1594–1612), Prince of Wales, with Sir John Harington (1592–1614), in the Hunting Field, Robert Peake the Elder  British, Oil on canvas
Robert Peake the Elder (British, ca. 1551–1619 London)

Latest reviews

No dynasty has better captured the modern imagination.

The New York Times

A glorious show

The Art Newspaper

One of the most exciting exhibits of the fall

Time Out New York


Elle Decor

Speaks to popular culture’s fascination with fashion, royalty, and fame


A dazzling array of visual strategies for rule


A focused, cool and refreshing study in the imagery of power

The Wall Street Journal
Marquee: Quentin Metsys the Younger. Elizabeth I of England (“The Sieve Portrait”) (detail), 1583. Oil on canvas. Pinacoteca Nazionale di Siena. By permission of Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities. Polo museale della Toscana. Photo Pinacoteca Nazionale di Siena