And Nathan said unto David, ‘Thou art Man’, one of a pair of Angelica Kauffman paintings offered at Sworders estimated at £60,000-80,000.

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The paintings by the Swiss neoclassical artist who spent 15 years in England and had a significant impact on the London art scene have come from the same UK private collection.

Comprising five lots at the September 27 auction in Stansted Mountfitchet, the combined estimate for the group is £220,000-300,000.

The highlight is a pair of oils on canvas depicting biblical scenes from the Old Testament. Both signed and measuring 21¾in x 19¼in (55 x 49cm), one is titled And Nathan said unto David, ‘Thou art Man’ and the other The prophet Ahlijah foretells to the wife of King Jeroboam the death of her son Abijah.

Commissioned by George Bowles in Rome in August 1791, they sold at Sotheby’s in 1980 and again in 1999, fetching £50,000 on the latter occasion. This time round they are estimated at £60,000-80,000.


Cephalus with Procris and Cupid by Angelica Kauffman – estimate £50,000-60,000 at Sworders.

Another work in the group believed to have been owned by Bowles – one of Kauffman’s leading British patrons, who acquired over 50 of her works for his residence in Wanstead, Essex – is a signed oil on canvas titled Cephalus with Procris and Cupid.

Measuring 3ft 3in x 4ft 7in (1 x 1.4m), it was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1779 and last appeared at auction at Sotheby’s in 2007, making £40,000.

At Sworders the estimate is £50,000-60,000.