Oil on canvas
Unframed: 76.2 x 63.6 cm (30 x 25 1/16 in.)
The Elisabeth Severance Prentiss Collection 1944.82
The portrait shows Mary in her twenties, with her hair powdered fashionably grey.
Mary’s modest and contemplative demeanor is a counterpoint to a rather elaborate ensemble consisting of a gown embroidered with gold flower sprigs, trimmed with lace and pearls, and tied with a gold sash, as well as a gold-striped veil and a bracelet with eight gold bands. Gainsborough’s compact oval format and the sitter’s informal pose lend this portrait an air of intimacy.
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