Skip to main contentSkip to footer

Charles Spencer shares old family portrait – and fans are divided

The Earl is the younger brother of the late Princess of Wales

charles spencer king killers
Matthew Moore
Matthew MooreOnline News Editor
Share this:

Charles Spencer has regularly shown that his ancestral home of Althorp House has all kinds of hidden goodies, and on Friday he wowed with a family portrait.

READ: Charles Spencer recalls emotional meeting with Princess Diana after he introduced her to Martin Bashir

The painting in question was of John Charles, 3rd Earl Spencer and it was painted in 1788 when John would have been a small child. "Portrait of John Charles, later 3rd Earl Spencer, by Sir Joshua Reynolds, painted in 1788 - and a post card of the same from the 1920s, that I found in a drawer at @althorphouse this morning," the Earl explained.

WATCH: Princess Diana's childhood home could be a farm in new video

"John Charles was known as 'Honest Jack' - he was Leader of the House of Commons and Chancellor of the Exchequer in the early 1830s, and was famed for his straightforward nature. His greatest pleasure was the countryside - he was particularly happy when his short horn bulls won England’s main agricultural prizes."

SEE: Charles Spencer shares breathtaking photo of Althorp House following fire on the grounds

LOOK: Earl Charles Spencer shares chilling photo of Princess Diana's former home

But there was some tragedy in the story, as he shared: "His wife died in childbirth, and he lived at Althorp in late middle age with just one servant to look after him.

"A decent, rather sad, man, caught here in boyhood, he was the only one of Reynolds’s sitters to live long enough to also be photographed."

Charles' followers were enchanted by the old portrait, and many compared it to members of the royal family, even though they couldn't agree who John best resembled.

Fans compared the portrait to royalty

"I could see William in the above portrait," one posted, while a second shared: "Diana looked like him!"

MORE: Charles Spencer auctions off special tribute dedicated to his late sister

SEE: Earl Charles Spencer captures rare magical moment at Althorp House

And a third disagreed with both, as they commented: "And John Charles' outfit here was the inspiration for the boys' ensembles for your first wedding, correct? I remember seeing Prince Harry as a boy dressed similarly for your first wedding."

Charles is the steward and current owner of Althorp House, which is also Princess Diana's childhood home, and he recently revealed some new conservation efforts being undertaken at the property.

prince william prince harry walk

Fans couldn't decide who the young John best resembled

The 58-year-old took to social media to on Sunday share a stunning video of the new red poppies and vibrant purple flowers which were beginning to fill the surrounding area of the Althorp Estate.

SEE: Charles Spencer marks sister Princess Diana's birthday with poignant photo

MORE: Charles Spencer's wife Karen's sentimental engagement ring belonged to Princess Diana's relatives

There were also hints of yellow petals and white daisies amongst the bright new flora.

Captioning the clip, he penned: "We've been putting some overdue thought and effort into improving the countryside round @AlthorpHouse - this is part of a block of flowers put in next to nearby Great Brington, at the direction of our Conservation Manager, so both the villagers and Nature can benefit."

Are you a Princess Diana fan? Remember the late People's Princess with our special collection. Shop it here.

More Royalty

See more