Samuel Winter
1652 – 1660 (c.1603-1666)

When the days of the rebellion and the Cromwellian conquest were finally over, the College began a slow revival under the Commonwealth.1 Reconstruction started in September 1651 when the Parliamentary Commissioners installed as Provost their household chaplain, the Revd Dr Samuel Winter. Winter was born in Warwickshire and educated at Emmanuel College, Cambridge.2 Normal College activities gradually returned under Winter’s rule. He tightened up College discipline, and did as much as the times permitted to improve its finances and staffing. Winters showed conspicuous generosity in financing scholarships for poor students and in giving a large sum to purchase books for the library.3 He initiated a move to develop the secular side of the College’s teaching with appointments to ‘professorships’  in law and mathematics. The manner of his appointment was not, however, in accord with the statutes, and following the Restoration of 1660 when Charles II returned to London as king, he was deprived of the provostship. Winter returned to England where he died in October 1666.

Painting Details

These portraits have been identified as portraits of both Thomas Seele and of Samuel Winter. Although it is impossible to be certain which Provost they represent, the attribution to Provost Winter, Cromwell’s Provost, seems to have slightly more credence.4

By an unknown artist
Oil on canvas

  1. J.V. Luce, Trinity College Dublin, The First 400 Years (Dublin, 1992), pp 23-4.
  2. Anne Crookshank and David Webb, Paintings and Sculptures in Trinity College Dublin (Dublin, 1990), p. 141.
  3. J.V. Luce, Trinity College Dublin, The First 400 Years (Dublin, 1992), pp 23-4.
  4. Anne Crookshank and David Webb, Paintings and Sculptures in Trinity College Dublin (Dublin, 1990), p. 141.