Sir Anthony van Dyck, Flemish, 1599–1641
Emmanuel Philibert of Savoy, Viceroy of Sicily, 1624
oil on canvas
By Permission of the Trustees of Dulwich Picture Gallery, London

Emmanuel Philibert was the grandson of Philip II , the cousin of Philip IV, the supreme commander of the Spanish navy in the Mediterranean, and viceroy of Sicily. While living in Palermo, he summoned the Flemish artist Anthony van Dyck, then based in Genoa, to paint this court portrait of him wearing the armor shown here. Executed the year Emmanuel died of the plague at the age of thirty-six, the portrait exemplifies an early seventeenth-century ruler, combining a sense of martial prowess with foppish elegance.