Elizabeth Carter (1717-1806), Scholar and writer
Sitter associated with 9 portraits
Encouraged by her father, a clergyman, to study, Carter applied herself with such perseverance that she became one of the most learned Englishwoman of her time, being mistress of Latin, Greek, Hebrew, and Arabic, besides several modern European languages. She rendered into English De Crousaz's Examen de l'essai de Monsieur Pope sur l'homme (1739); Algarotti's Newtonianismo per le Donne; the works of Epictetus (1758) and wrote a volume of poems. An icon of virtue and learning, Carter was later sought out by aspiring women writers, including the literary critic Elizabeth Montagu, with whom she developed a lifelong friendship and helped to establish the Bluestocking Circle.
by Richard Samuel
oil on canvas, exhibited 1779
On display in Room 12 at the National Portrait Gallery