Strafford's Trial
By HOLLAR, W[enceslaus] , 1641

The True Maner of the Sitting of the Lords & Commons of Both Howses of Parliament, upon the tryal of Thomas Earle of Stratford, lord Lieutenant of Ireland

British Isles London
  • Author: HOLLAR, W[enceslaus]
  • Publication date: 1641.
  • Physical description: Etched print, trimmed to platemark.
  • Dimensions: 259 by 278mm. (10.25 by 11 inches).
  • Inventory reference: 18366


The case agains Thomas Wentworth, Earl of Strafford, is the focus of several prints by Wenceslaus Hollar. The present examples depicts Strafford’s trial in the House of Lords, which came about after his long-term opponent John Pym brought the case for impeachment to the House on November 11, 1640. Although Strafford went in person to confront his accusers, he was immediately withdrawn and taken into custody; he was held in the Tower of London for the subsequent months. Eventually the impeachment charge failed and so Parliament passed a bill of attainder allowing Strafford to be charged and executed on May 12, 1641.

Hollar’s print shows the packed House of Lords during Stafford’s trial, with a 25-point alphabetical key identifying various figures and features shown, such as the king’s “Seate of State”, “P. the Earls, Q. the Viscounts, R. the Barons, S. the Knights”, and naturally “V. the Earle of Strafford”, standing in a raised box and facing away towards the top of the House. Interestingly, the clerks seems to be making their notes on the floor.


  1. NHG Hollar 330 I
  2. Pennington 551i
  3. BM Q,6.21.