Emma (née Lyon), Lady Hamilton
1 portrait on display in Room 17 at the National Portrait Gallery
Emma (née Lyon), Lady Hamilton
by George Romney
oil on canvas, circa 1785
29 in. x 23 1/2 in. (737 mm x 597 mm)
Click on the links below to find out more:
Sitterback to top
- Emma (née Lyon), Lady Hamilton (Baptised 1765-1815), Mistress of Lord Nelson. Sitter in 30 portraits.
Artistback to top
- George Romney (1734-1802), Portrait painter. Artist associated with 160 portraits, Sitter in 5 portraits.
This portraitback to top
The daughter of a Cheshire blacksmith, Emma Hamilton became the mistress of Charles Greville, and later the wife of his uncle, Sir William Hamilton, the celebrated connoisseur who was British Ambassador in Naples. There she met Nelson after his decisive victory at the Nile and became his mistress. Fêted by Romney and other artists for her beauty, she gained a European reputation for her stylish 'tableaux vivants' or 'Attitudes'.
Linked publicationsback to top
- National Portrait Gallery: 100 Portraits, p. 45
- Audio Guide
- Colville, Quinton; Williams, Kate, Emma Hamilton : seduction & celebrity, 2016, p. 80
- Gibson, Robin, Treasures from the National Portrait Gallery, 1996, p. 71
- Holmes, Richard; Crane, David; Woof, Robert; Hebron, Stephen, Romantics and Revolutionaries: Regency portraits from the National Portrait Gallery, 2002, p. 17
- Ingamells, John, National Portrait Gallery: Mid-Georgian Portraits 1760-1790, 2004, p. 228
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 274
- Schama, Simon, The Face of Britain: The Nation Through its Portraits, 2015-09-15, p. 242
- Schama, Simon, The Face of Britain: The Nation Through its Portraits, 2015-09-15, p. 315
- Various contributors, National Portrait Gallery: A Portrait of Britain, 2014, p. 111
Events of 1785back to top
Current affairsGeorge Prince of Wales secretly marries his mistress Maria Fitzherbert in contravention of the Royal Marriages Act of 1772.Prime Minister William Pitt introduces a bill proposing parliamentary reform and the abolition of 'rotten boroughs' but is defeated.
Art and scienceWilliam Cowper publishes his best -known poem The Task.James Boswell publishes The Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides, narrating his travels with the late writer Samuel Johnson. Physician and naturalist James Hutton presents his studies of local rocks to the Royal Society of Edinburgh, launching the era of scientific geology.
InternationalWarren Hastings resigns as Governor-General of Bengal and returns to England. His trial begins on charges of corruption in the administration of India. French sculptor Jean Antoine Houdon crosses the Atlantic to sculpt a statue of George Washington. British government establishes a permanent land force in the Eastern Caribbean, based in Barbados.
See this portrait
- WebQuest: Pepys, Nelson, Seacole
- Only Connect
- Only Connect - Emma Hamilton <> William Hamilton
- Only Connect - Emma Hamilton <> Richard Cosway
- Only Connect - William Hamilton <> Emma Hamilton
- Only Connect - William Hamilton <> Joseph Haydn
- Only Connect - William Hamilton <> Horatio Nelson
- Only Connect - Emma Hamilton <> Horatio Nelson
- Only Connect - Emma Hamilton <> Joseph Haydn
- Only Connect - installation video
- George Romney
- Collected Archives - N-S
- Artist - Romney
- The Regency