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Sir Peter Lely (1618-1680) double portrait of Sir John Rivers, 3rd Bart., and his wife Lady Anne Rivers.

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But day two of the sale also yielded this impressive-looking Sir Peter Lely (1618-1680) double portrait of Sir John Rivers, 3rd Bart., and his wife Lady Anne Rivers, right, which had been bought by its vendors at Dreweatt Neate in October 1988 for £20,000.

Although in reasonably good condition (albeit with an old lining) and with plenty of decorative appeal, this 4ft 71/2in x 5ft 111/4in (1.41 x 1.81m) canvas was rather too large for most people's living rooms and the sitters seemed not to have made a significant impact on English history.

As a result, a West Country private buyer was able to secure it at £38,000, just under the pre-sale estimate of £40,000-60,000.