Mallams, from the UK, sells on 19 October 2016 a "Circle of Peter Lely" portrait of Elizabeth Cockayne, estimated at £700 to £900.
Valence House Museum in London.
The sitters in the two works are clearly the same, with the same pose and the same dress. Normally I would conclude that the solo portrait is a copy after the portrait of the couple, but as the solo portrait is better and considerably larger (65 by 56cm, compared to 40 by 50 cm for the full couple painting), it may well be that the portrait now for sale is the original and the one at Valence a composition of two individual portraits.
The portrait at Valence is described as "This is Thomas Fanshawe's second marriage portrait (there is another
portrait in the Collection of him with his first wife Margaret Heath,
painted by Peter Lely). The exact date of the marriage between Thomas
and Elizabeth is not known, but it must be after 1682 when Elizabeth is
mentioned in documents relating to Thomas. Elizabeth was one of the 16
children of Thomas, 1st Viscount Fanshawe, and Elizabeth Cockayne, and
her husband Thomas was a distant cousin of hers, as they shared a great
grandfather in Thomas Fanshawe, second Remembrancer, although through
different great grandmothers."
Valence Museum itself has another portrait of Fanshawe of Jenkins, by Peter Lely. This matches the above (somewhat later) Beale portrait, but doesn't seem to match the Valence mariage portrait.
So, to me it seems quite certain that the portrait for sale and the double (marriage) portrait in the Valence House Museum are of Elizabeth Cockaine / Cockayne and Thomas Fanshawe, the 1st Viscount, as the label on the portrait indicates. This would date the portrait to ca. 1630, removing it from the circle of Peter Lely (born in 1618)
The main problem with my whole theory is that the painting would be very modern for ca. 1630, and more in style for 1680. Enigma! Perhaps it is a portrait of the 1630 Elisabeth Fanshawe née Cockayne, painted ca. 1680? Not impossible, but a bit strange nevertheless.
It should be worth the estimate as a 1680 portrait, and a lot more as a 1630 portrait.
UPDATE: I've been thinking about this some more, and am not really comfortable describing it as ca. 1630 either, because the style of painting doesn't fit. So, on second thoughts (and considering the label on the painting), perhaps this is a portrait of Elizabeth Cockayne, based on the marriage portrait, but painted shortly after her death by a Lely-esque painter (this would also match the more greyish mourning colours of the dress)? I've changed the title of this blog post accordingly.
UPDATE: sold for £6,800 or nearly 10 times the estimate, so I'm clearly not the only one who noticed this painting.