Terreiro do Paço in the 17th century
Dirk Stoop (1610-1686)
The painter Dirk Stoop was responsible for one of the most emblematic views of Terreiro do Paço in the 17th century. The work has been identified as potentially depicting the arrival in Lisbon of Francisco de Mello e Torres, 1st Count of Ponte and Extraordinary Ambassador of Portugal in London, where he agreed the Whitehall Treaty (23 June 1661) and concluded negotiations for the marriage of Catherine of Braganza to Charles II of England.
The painting provides a narrative of the key moments preceding the princess’s departure, with greatest emphasis given to Count Francisco de Mello e Torres, who is depicted inside the coach and wearing on his cape the cross of the Order of Christ. Next to the river, the princess’s dowry is being loaded, supervised by the English. In the centre, we can make out Catherine of Braganza, strolling with her mother, Luísa de Gusmão (1613-1666) and a lady-in-waiting.
Find out more in this video
© Museu de Lisboa