3 of 9 portraits of Elizabeth Carter
by Sir Thomas Lawrence
pastel on vellum, 1788-1789
13 3/4 in. x 11 5/8 in. (350 mm x 295 mm)
Click on the links below to find out more:
Sitterback to top
- Elizabeth Carter (1717-1806), Scholar and writer. Sitter associated with 9 portraits.
Artistback to top
- Sir Thomas Lawrence (1769-1830), Portrait painter, collector and President of the Royal Academy. Artist associated with 684 portraits, Sitter in 25 portraits.
This portraitback to top
From the age of about eleven, Lawrence had supported his family by making pastel portraits in the fashionable spa town of Bath. This portrait of the Bluestocking intellectual Elizabeth Carter was, however, executed soon after he moved to London in 1787. Shown at the Royal Academy in 1790, this was one of the last pastels that Lawrence exhibited. With its easy handling and sensitivity to the age, appearance and modesty of a diffident sitter it marks the high-point of Lawrence's pastels.
Linked publicationsback to top
- Cooper, John, Visitor's Guide, 2000, p. 82
- Eger, Elizabeth; Peltz, Lucy, Brilliant Women: 18th Century Bluestockings, 2008 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from 13 March to 15 June 2008), p. 33
- Ingamells, John, National Portrait Gallery: Mid-Georgian Portraits 1760-1790, 2004, p. 94
- Levey, Michael, Sir Thomas Lawrence, 1979 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from 9 November 1979 - 16 March 1980)
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 107
- Toksvig, Sandi; Dyer, Richard, Gay Icons, 2009 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from 2 July - 18 October 2009), p. 17
Events of 1788back to top
Current affairsParliament begins an investigation into the slave trade, led by reformers Thomas Clarkson and William Wilberforce.Regency Crisis; George III's madness is announced provoking a political storm. Former Governor-General of Bengal Warren Hastings' trial begins before the House of Lords.Henry Benedict Stuart becomes the new Stuart claimant to the British throne.
Art and scienceArtist Thomas Gainsborough dies. First edition of The Times newspaper is published in London.Scottish engineer and inventor William Symington demonstrates the first paddle steamer on Dalswinton Loch near Dumfries.Robert Burns writes his version of the Scots poem Auld Lang Syne.
InternationalMinisters of the French King, Louis XVI, reluctantly announce that the Estates General will meet the following year, for the first time since 1614. United States constitution comes into force when New Hampshire becomes the ninth state to ratify it. First Fleet reaches Australia, anchoring in Botany Bay. Arthur Phillip, selecting a suitable site for the first Australian penal colony, names the place Sydney Cove.
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