16th century sultan’s portrait sold for $481,000 in London auction
A rare portrait of Ottoman Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent was sold in an auction in London on March 31, bringing in a whopping £350,000 ($481,000)
The portrait was on offer for collectors in live bidding at famed auction house Sotheby’s starting at £80,000. The sale price nearly tripled pre-auction estimates, which predicted the portrait could be sold for as high as £120,000.
The painting was formerly part of a family collection in France since the 19th century and is a likeness of two 16th century portraits, according to Sotheby’s.
It is associated with a portrait attributed to Cristofano Dell’ Altissimo in Florence’s Galleria Degli Uffizi and a smaller portrait of Archduke Ferdinand II exhibited in Vienna’s Kunsthistorisches Museum.
The painting “opens a window onto a narrative of artistic exchanges between Venice and the Ottomans in the 1530s,” according to Sotheby’s.
Suleiman the Magnificent ruled for nearly a half century, from 1520 to 1566.
The auction on March 31 also included a portrait of Suleiman’s daughter Mihrimah Sultan, by Titian, the 16th century Venetian artist. The painting was sold to a buyer for £60,000.
Ottoman velvet work from the “distinguished collection of Edgar Vincent, 1st Viscount d’Abernon” was also on auction.