A harmonious portrait

14 January 2010

A portrait of Mary Hamilton Beckford, painted in 1799 by Benjamin West. This graceful portrait is a formidable testament to the good breeding, aristocratic heritage and excellent taste of the sitter. The eye is drawn to the elegant house in the background and to the book of music on Mrs Beckford’s lap, both carefully placed to ensure that any onlookers are made fully aware that they are in the presence of a lady who is both talented and well heeled.