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Later Victorian Portraits Catalogue

Barbara Leigh Smith Bodichon (1827-1891), Artist and women's rights activist; benefactor of Girton College, Cambridge

Self-portraits
Possible self-portraits
By other artists
Photographs

Self-portraitsback to top


As well as the examples listed below, there may be other self-portraits to discover in Bodichon’s correspondence with George Eliot in the Beinecke Library, Yale University, New Haven.

1840s
Pencil drawing, 184 x 230mm, signed ‘Barbara Leigh Smith inv.’, whole-length, profile to left, seated, as Olivia in Twelfth Night, during amateur theatricals, 9 Pelham Crescent, Hastings (where lived 1836–53); Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/8. Repr. Hirsch 1998, fig.7.

1856
Watercolour drawing, 71 x107mm, arched top, inscr. ‘Leigh Smith / Ventnor IoW / 1856’, with Anna Mary Howitt, two small figures sketching by the cliffs, Jan. 1856; priv. coll. Exh. RA 1856 (913); and Women Artists and the Pre-Raphaelite Movement, Manchester CAG, 1997 (3); repr. Marsh & Nunn 1997, no.3, p.23.

Pen and ink sketches, in letter to George Eliot (Mary Ann Cross), 21 Nov. 1856:
(a) inscr. ‘Lady Susan Harcourt / Lady Sheffield / Lady Colville / The Aristocracy accusing B of the / letter in Gagliani’, whole-length to right, seated facing three ladies. See also copy photograph, Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/12.
(b) whole-length, profile to left, on horseback, galloping on beach.
(c) inscr. ‘B learns French’, head-and-shoulders, seated at desk with tutor, Pasteur André.
George Eliot and George Henry Lewes Coll., Beinecke L., Yale U., New Haven. Sheet repr. Cherry 2000, fig.3.1.

Pen and ink sketch, in letter to George Eliot (Mary Ann Cross), 8 Dec. 1856, inscr. with names of plants and animals, whole-length, profile to right, seated under palm tree, sketching Algerian landscape; George Eliot and George Henry Lewes Coll., Beinecke L., Yale U., New Haven. Repr. Cherry 2000, fig.3.2. See also copy photograph, Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/12.

Pen and ink sketch, inscr. ‘Bringing home / Bamboos to paint’, whole-length, profile to left, carrying long branches; Beinecke L., Yale U., New Haven; known from copy photograph, Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/12.

c.1856–76
Three undated drawings pasted into sketchbook, Algeria, 1856–76:
(a) pen and ink, inscr. ‘Bar coming home with Roseaux to paint. / ALS [Anne Leigh Smith] sculpt. BLS fecit’, whole-length, profile to left, carrying long branches; sketchbook p.3. Repr. Girton College 1991, pp.5 and 23.
(b) pen and ink on tracing paper, 116 x 75mm, captioned ‘Journey with Nanny [Anne Leigh Smith], Journey to Arba’, two women on galloping horses; sketchbook p.70. Repr. Girton College 1991, inside front cover.
(c) pencil, pen and ink, 173 x 266mm, whole-length to left, seated, with easel and parasol, to right of house, with another figure; sketchbook p.93. Copy photograph, Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/12.
Sketchbook, Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/14.

1858
Two drawings pasted into sketchbook, Algeria, 1856–76:
(a) pencil, pen and ink sketch, 173 x 266 mm, inscr. and dated ‘1858 Campagne Pougnet we changed the name to Campagne du Pavillon’, female figure sketching; sketchbook p.91.
(b) pencil, ink and wash sketch, 203 x267mm, inscr. and dated ‘wall of our terrace below our house 1858’, female figure sketching; sketchbook p.92.
Sketchbook, Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/14.

?1860s
Ink, pencil and grey wash drawing, whole-length to left, seated in landscape, below Algerian house; untraced. Copy photograph, Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/12; repr. Festing 1991, pl.39.

Undated self-portraits
Pen and ink sketch, inscr. with verse ‘To Bessie xxxxxx ….. [Bessie Raynor Parkes (Mrs Louis Belloc)] overhead’, whole-length, profile to left, riding down distant track with another woman; untraced. Copy photograph, Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/12.

Medium unknown, with Anne Leigh Smith, beside a ravine in the Atlas Mountains; untraced. Ref. Burton 1949, p.84; and Cherry 2000, p.82.


Possible self-portraitsback to top


1846
Pencil and white chalk drawings on brown paper, 317 x 255mm, recto signed ‘B.S. 1846’, whole-length, profile to right, reading; verso, head-and-shoulders, profile to left; Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/8.

1848
Pencil drawing on buff paper, 139 x 182mm, inscr. ‘[?]News fr. Vienna, 17 Nov.1848’, half-length to right, head propped on hands, seated at desk, reading by candlelight; Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/8.

mid-1850s
Set of four pen and ink outline drawings on laid paper, 174 x 110mm:
(a) inscr. ‘Barbara Leigh Smith / absorbed.’, whole-length, rear view, standing on rock wearing hat and cloak; Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/6, B505/1. Exh. Bodichon Centenary Exhibition, Girton Coll., Cambridge, 1991, no.38; repr. Burton 1949, p.82; and Girton College 1991, inside end cover.
(b) inscr. ‘Barbara Leigh Smith / in ye / Breeze.’, whole-length to left, rear view, wearing hat and cloak; Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/6, B505/2. Exh. Bodichon Centenary Exhibition, Girton Coll., Cambridge, 1991, no.38; repr. Burton 1949, p.32.
(c) inscr. ‘lightning[sic]’ and ‘thunder’ and below ‘Barbara Leigh Smith in the pursuit of Art / unconscious of small humanity.’, whole-length to right, wearing spectacles, wide hat and cloak; Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/6, B505/3. Exh. Bodichon Centenary Exhibition, Girton Coll., Cambridge, 1991, no.38; repr. Burton 1949, p.129; Girton College 1991, p.3; and Hirsch 1998, fig.14.
(d) inscr. ‘Ye Newe Generation’, whole-length to left, wearing hat and cloak, with three other young women (probably Bessie Raynor Parkes (Mrs Louis Belloc), Jane Benham and Anna Mary Howitt), confronting a sketchily drawn bull; Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/6, B505/4. Exh. Painting Women: Victorian Women Artists, Rochdale AG, 1987 (10); and Bodichon Centenary Exhibition, Girton Coll., Cambridge, 1991 (38); repr. Burton 1949, p.56; Cherry 1987, no.10; Girton College 1991, p.5; Cherry 1993, pl.4; Cherry 1995, p.59, fig.2; Marsh & Nunn 1997, p.10, fig.2; Cherry 2000, p.46, fig.1.10; and Hirsch 1998, fig.15.

undated
Pencil drawing, 122 x 84mm, inscr. on verso ‘?Self-portrait’, head-and-shoulders, profile to left; Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/6, B505/5a. Repr. Girton College 1991, p.2 (where captioned as self-portrait)


By other artistsback to top


c.1842
Silhouette by unidentified artist, inscr. ‘aged 15 years’, head-and-shoulders, profile to right; priv. coll. Repr. Hirsch 1998, fig.5.

c.1856
Oil painting by Anna Mary Howitt, Boadicea Brooding over Her Wrongs; untraced. ‘Mrs. Bodichon was a lady of ample but not very graceful form, with a fine animated face, brilliant complexion, and superb profusion of flame-golden hair (Miss Howitt once painted her as Boadicea).’ [1] See Cherry 1993, pp.187–9 for this and further refs.’

1861
Black crayon drawing on buff-coloured paper, 430 x 320mm, by Samuel Laurence, [2] signed and dated ‘August 1861’, head turned three-quarters to left, looking upwards; Girton Coll., Cambridge, College Picture Collection ID 60. [3] Exh. Bodichon Centenary Exhibition, Girton Coll., Cambridge, 1991 (no cat. no.); repr. Burton 1949, facing p.206; Girton College 1991, p.1; Crabbe 1992 (no page no.); Hirsch 1995, p.168, fig.25; and Hirsch 1998, fig.32. Cutting, coll. Biographical Press Cuttings, Women’s L., LSE, London (see MEPL, London, 10021816 (Fawcett L.).
Collotype by The Autotype Company after Laurence; NPG D31926 (inscr. in ink, lower right ‘Given by B.L.S. Bodichon / to Mary A. Ewart / at Scalands Gate / 1879 / Bequeathed to the National / Portrait Gallery by Miss Ewart / & received, June 1911’ and bearing blindstamps ‘NPG’ and ‘Autotype’); and Royal Holloway, U. of London, BC RF/151/3.
Wood-engraving by unidentified engraver after Laurence (loosely interpreted), oval format; Getty Images, 85702661. Repr. Sunday Times, 12 July 1998, p.5.

?c.1861
Oil on canvas, 640 x 490mm, by Samuel Laurence, bust-length, looking to left, wearing white shift under green unbuttoned jacket; Girton Coll., Cambridge, College Picture Collection ID 237 (Hall). Exh. Bodichon Centenary Exhibition, Girton Coll., Cambridge, 1991 (no cat. no.); repr. Reed 1972, facing p.38; Ashton 1996, fig.27; and Hirsch 1998, fig.41. [4]
Gelatine silverprint; coll. Women’s L., LSE, London, TWL.2003.638.

exh. 1868
Portrait by Eliza Florence Bridell (née Fox and later Mrs Fox); untraced. Exh. RA 1868 (573); ref. Crawford 1999, p.69. [5]

c.1883–4
Oil on canvas, 1180 x 960mm, by Emily Mary Osborn, signed lower left, three-quarter-length, facing right towards easel, seated, wearing green dress with russet stole, holding broad paintbrush and box of watercolours; donated to Girton College by Hastings AG 1963, College Picture Collection ID 142 (Old Hall). Offered to NPG Oct. 1912 by Anne Leigh Smith but deemed ‘unsuitable for acceptance owing to its size’ and declined. [6] Exh. Painting Women: Victorian Women Artists, Rochdale AG, 1987 (12); and Bodichon Centenary Exhibition, Girton Coll., Cambridge, 1991 (no cat. no.); repr. Cherry 1987, no.12; Gillett 1990, p.136, fig. 13; Bennett 1990, fig.13; Cherry 1993, pl.13; Cherry 1995, p.63, fig.6; and Hirsch 1998, fig.54. Crawford 1999, p.69, dates the painting to 1888.

exh. 1884
Oil on canvas, 40 x 52in, by Emily Mary Osborn, three-quarter-length, facing left towards easel, seated, scarf draped loosely across shoulders, left hand holding palette and oil paintbrushes, peacock feather duster on easel; presented to Girton Coll., Cambridge, 1885, where remained until 1929; untraced. Exh. Grosvenor G., London, 1884 (197); [7] repr. Blackburn 1902, facing p.47; and Hirsch 1998, fig.53; ref. Cherry 1993 pp.104–9. For head-and-shoulders detail, see old photograph, Girton Coll. Archive, Cambridge, GCPH 4/2/1.

repr. 1884
Pen, brush and ink drawing with china white on card, 220 x 250mm, by Emily Mary Osborn, signed lower left ‘EMO’ and inscr. on verso ‘Portrait of Madame Bodichon / to be presented by some / friends to Girton College / Cambridge’, three-quarter-length, facing left towards easel, seated, scarf draped loosely across shoulders, left hand holding palette and brushes; presented to Girton Coll., Cambridge, 1949, GCPP Bodichon 5/4. Exh. Bodichon Centenary Exhibition, Girton Coll., Cambridge, 1991 (no cat. no.); repr. Blackburn 1884, p.42; Blackburn 1885, p.159; Crabbe 1988, p.8; Crabbe 1992, cover image; Cherry 1995, p.62, fig.5; and Cherry 2000, fig.5.19. The drawing, after the oil by Osborn (see above, ‘exh. 1884’), was made for reproduction in Blackburn 1884.

exh. 1897
Portrait, no further details, but possibly that by Osborn (see above, ‘c.1883–4’); ref. Cherry 1993, p.107. Lent by Miss Helen Blackburn to Victorian Era Exhibition, Earl’s Court, London, May 1897. [8]


Undated portrait
Caricature drawing by Bessie Raynor Parkes (Mrs Louis Belloc), inscr. ‘Trop Tard Too Late’, whole-length to left, running to catch omnibus to Algiers; priv. coll. Repr. Moore 2010, fig.8.


Photographsback to top


c.1853
Photograph by unidentified photographer, head in oval, looking three-quarters to left, hair loose over shoulders; priv. coll. Repr. Hirsch 1998, dustjacket (detail); and Moore 2010, fig.8.

c.1857–8
Ambrotype probably by Silas A. Holmes; see NPG P137.

c.1865–70
Photographs by unidentified photographer, in courtyard, Campagne du Pavillon, Algiers, two known poses:
(a) 94 x 65mm, verso stamped ‘Bodichon’, whole-length, head three-quarters to left, seated, black hat on knee.
(b) 105 x 65mm, verso stamped ‘Bodichon’, whole-length to right, seated receiving the post from servant Hamet; repr. Hirsch 1998, fig.31; and Cherry 2000, fig.2.1.
Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 7.

?late 1860s
Photographs by Disdéri, London, three known poses:
(a)144 x 85 mm, whole-length, profile to left, wearing cloak with decorative collar and tassels hanging at back; Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 5/2; and Girton Coll. Archive, Cambridge, GCPH 4/2/2 (mounted copy). Repr. Stephen 1927, facing p.32 (rephotographed by Emery Walker, print NPG SB [Bodichon]); Strachey 1927, facing p.2 (see MEPL, London, 10031175); Burton 1949, frontispiece; Crabbe 1981, p.312, fig.1; Herstein 1985, frontispiece; and Marsh & Nunn 1997, p.102.
The best-known image of Barbara Bodichon.
(b) carte de visite, Disdéri surname and address stamped on mount, ‘4 Brook St Hanover Sqre W’, [9] inscr. on verso ‘Madame Bodichon / Barbara Leigh Smith / Bodichon’, three-quarter-length to left, eyes raised, wearing plain cloak; Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 5/3.
(c) photograph, whole-length to left, facing three-quarters to left, leaning on a half-column, wearing plain cloak; Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 9/1. Repr. as halftone Piper 1906, p.24. Modern copy photograph, Girton Coll. Archive, Cambridge, GCPH 4/2/13.
Bodichon looks healthy and quite youthful, so these photographs must precede her stroke in 1877.

c.1870s
Photograph by unidentified photographer, three-quarter-length to left, head turned to viewer, wearing double strand of beads and matching bracelets; Tower Room, Girton Coll., Cambridge (framed print in oval mount). Modern copy photograph, Girton Coll. Archive, Cambridge, GCPH 4/2/8.

late 1880s
Photograph by unidentified photographer, head vignette, three-quarters to left, black bands in grey hair; repr. as halftone (obit. cutting?), Girton Coll., Cambridge, GCPP Bodichon 8/14.

Photograph by Gertrude Jekyll, half-length, lying to left on couch with eyes closed, nurse Hornsby taking pulse, Scalands Gate, Sussex; Gertrude Jekyll Coll., College of Environmental Design, Documents Coll., U. of California, Berkeley. Repr. Festing 1991, pl.38; and Hirsch 1998, fig.56. Modern copy photograph, Girton Coll. Archive, Cambridge, GCPH 4/2/11.

publ. 1891
Photograph by unidentified photographer, head-and-shoulders slightly to left, wearing narrow frilled collar and circular brooch at neck; repr. as wood-engr. by ‘N S’, ILN, 27 June 1891, p.839 (obits).


Footnotes
1) Rossetti 1906, pp.171–2.
2) ‘Her portrait was more than once painted, but never well, and the best likeness of her is a drawing by Samuel Laurence’; Moore 1901. Norman Moore was married to Barbara Bodichon’s niece Amy.
3) Bodichon had previously admired Laurence’s portrait of George Eliot, drawn in Aug. 1860; see Haight 1968, p.339.
4) A ‘portrait of Mme Bodichon’ by Samuel Laurence (no details) was shown at the Victorian Era Exhibition, Earl’s Court, London, May 1897, in the ‘Education Division’ room, in the area dedicated to Bedford College, London. Ref. Victorian Era Exhibition, London, 1897, Women’s Work (82), p.92 in cat.
5) Eliza Bridell-Fox (or Eliza Fox Bridell, see Cherry 2000, pp.x, 93), the daughter of W. Johnson Fox. As Eliza Fox she ran art classes for women in the late 1840s, which Barbara Leigh Smith attended; see Cherry 1993, p.55. For Bridell-Fox’s political work with Bodichon in 1856, see Crawford 1999, p.66.
6) See NPG Description of Portraits, vol.11, no.40, ill. See also letter from Emily M. Osborn (1828–1925) to Director [Sir Charles Holmes], 9 Oct. 1912, NPG RP P137: ‘I am sending at the request of Miss Leigh Smith my portrait of her sister, Madame Bodichon – which she proposes to present to the National Portrait Gallery. I have just been altering the right hand, but the colour has not dried sufficiently to allow my finishing it and bringing it into tone with the rest of the picture, which was painted in 1883–4.’ See also Minutes of Trustee Meetings, vol.8, NPG Archive, Meeting of 24 Oct. 1912; and entry for NPG P137.
7) See photograph of Dining Hall, Girton Coll., for painting hanging in situ in 1887; Girton Coll., Cambridge. For further details surrounding the commission see Cherry 2000, pp.196–7.
8) Shown at the Victorian Era Exhibition, Earl’s Court, London, May 1897, in the ‘Historical Hall’, as part of the ‘Historical, Commemorative and Literature Division’. Ref. Victorian Era Exhibition, London, 1897, Women’s Work (2), p.20 in cat. For Blackburn’s collection of images of women suffragists, see Cherry 1993, p.107.
9) André Adolphe Eugene Disdéri had a studio at 4 Brook Street between 1868 and 1894.

Carol Blackett-Ord