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John Keats

6 of 16 portraits of John Keats

John Keats, by Joseph Severn, 1819 - NPG 1605 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

John Keats

by Joseph Severn
oil on ivory, 1819
4 1/4 in. x 3 1/8 in. (108 mm x 79 mm)
Given by executors of Sir Charles Wentworth Dilke, Bt, 1919
Primary Collection
NPG 1605


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  • John Keats (1795-1821), Poet. Sitter in 16 portraits, Artist associated with 2 portraits.

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  • Joseph Severn (1793-1879), Painter; friend of John Keats. Artist associated with 14 portraits, Sitter associated with 3 portraits.

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This haunting portrait of John Keats was painted by his friend Joseph Severn. It presents Keats as an isolated, poetic genius. The portrait was painted while Keats was writing his Odes and just before the onset of his fatal illness. The first version of this portrait was a watercolour miniature which Severn gave to the poet's fiancée, Fanny Brawne, even though Keats was against the gift.

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