Mid-Georgian Portraits Catalogue

Sarah Siddons (née Kemble) (1755-1831), Actress

Tragedienne; daughter of a theatrical manager Roger Kemble, sister of the actor John Philip Kemble; married 1773 William Siddons.

'Her height was above the middle size, but not at all inclined to the embonpoint. Her face is peculiarly happy, the features being finely formed, though strong ... Her eye is brilliant and varying like the diamond ...' (James Boaden, 1827).

'Damn the nose, there's no end to it!' (Thomas Gainsborough).


This extended catalogue entry is from the out-of-print National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue: John Ingamells, National Portrait Gallery: Mid-Georgian Portraits 1760-1790, National Portrait Gallery, 2004, and is as published then. For the most up-to-date details on individual Collection works, we recommend reading the information provided in the Search the Collection results on this website in parallel with this text.