The Distribution of His Majesty’s Maundy, by the Sub – Almoner in the Chapel Royal at Whitehall

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The Distribution of His Majesty’s Maundy, by the Sub – Almoner in the Chapel Royal at Whitehall
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James Basire after Samuel Hieronymus Grimm
The Distribution of His Majesty’s Maundy, by the Sub – Almoner in the Chapel Royal at Whitehall.
London, March 27th 1777
Copper engraving
490x645mm
Trimmed on or just within side platemarks, traces of old folds, misc repairs to old folds, some affecting engraved surface
£280
A large, detailed view of the interior of Banqueting House, Whitehall, remodelled by Wren as the Chapel Royal. The view shows the Royal Family in the gallery overlooking the proceedings, with the male recipients of the bounty, holding their new suits of clothes on the left, and the female recipients in the centre, wearing their new cloaks and hats. The choir is seated on the left and the congregation in pews on the right. The distribution of the Maundy money on the last Thursday before Easter, by King George III’s Sub - Almoner Revd. Dr. Richard Kaye. From the reign of Edward II until the time of Charles II, who delegated the task to the bishop of London (William III was the first monarch to give the task to his Almoner), the King washed the feet of as many poor people as he was years old. In 1754, however, the practice was abandoned as distasteful, old fashioned and unhygienic and the presentation of specially minted silver Maundy Money substituted. The ceremony was initially held at the Chapel Royal, but later moved to Westminster Abbey, and now takes place at each of the British Cathedrals in turn