Lady Emma Hamilton as a Bacchante print

Lady Emma Hamilton as a Bacchante print

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Lady Emma Hamilton as a Bacchante by Élisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun (1755-1842) from the Lady Lever Art Gallery collection.

Élisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun was born in Paris. She is best known for her female neo-classical costume portraits. As painter and friend of Queen Marie Antoinette she fled France during the French Revolution in 1789, fearing that her closeness to the royal family placed her in danger. During her stay in Naples in the early 1790s she met Emma Hamilton and painted her four times.

Emma, originally from the Wirral, married the much older Sir William Hamilton, Ambassador to Naples in 1791. As a well-known society hostess Emma became famous for her part dance and part performance entertainments, known as ‘Attitudes’. In this painting probably painted in 1792, she is dressed as a bacchante, a female follower of the wine god Bacchus, with vine leaves tucked into a red head band. She is shown dancing with a tambourine. The smoking volcano Vesuvius, near Naples, is seen in the background


Dimensions: 30 x 40cm

Brand: Lady Lever Art Gallery

Printed in the UK


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