The works reflecting one of Gloucestershire’s oldest landowning dynasties range in date from the time of Sir Michael Hicks (1543-1612), the Elizabethan courtier who became secretary to Lord Burghley, to William Hicks Hicks Beach (1810-44) who never inherited Witcombe, having died young after straining himself while cutting trees. They will be offered as 16 lots with a combined estimate of approximately £20,000-30,000
The auction house said: “This collection takes us on a journey through family history and of course fashions in portraiture from the early 17th to the early 19th century. It is rare for such a complete group of family portraits to come to the market and is hoped that they will find appreciative new homes.”
One pair of portraits depicts Sir Howe and Lady Hicks, whose tenure at Witcombe encompassed much of the 18th century. Probably painted by Henry Pickering (1720- 70), they show the couple wearing fashionable dress.