A reverse glass painting, Sappho

A reverse glass painting, Sappho

Early 19th century

Framed: 18 3/4 x 23 3/4 in, 47.5 x 60.3 cm

Showing a young woman wearing a pleated white robe. She has lustrous, curling brown hair, and her face is shown in profile. The painting within a navy blue border inscribed “Sappho” in gold. In a later giltwood frame.

The picture is taken from a painting by Richard Westall (1765–1836), entitled Portrait of the artist’s wife as Sappho. Westall was an English painter and illustrator, and the drawing master of Queen Victoria.

A reverse glass painting of Venus and Cupid, from an original drawing by Richard Westall, is illustrated in Jenyns and Watson, Chinese Art: The Minor Arts II, no. 95, pp. 154–5.