Richard Cosway R.A., "Infancy" Lady Caroline Lamb (née Ponsonby) (1785-1828), as a two year old chil
Lot 110
Richard Cosway R.A., "Infancy" Lady Caroline Lamb (née Ponsonby) (1785-1828), as a two year old child, three-quarter length, advancing with arms outstretched, wearing low-cut white dress with blue sash tied to one side, landscape background
Sold for £21,510 (US$ 34,423) inc. premium

Lot Details
Richard Cosway R.A. (Okeford 1742 - London 1821)

Footnotes

  • The sitter has recently been identified by a stipple engraving by F. Bartolozzi dated 1788, of which the first state is inscribed 'Miss Caroline Ponsonby', cf. F. B. Daniell, A Catalogue Raisonné of the Engraved Works of Richard Cosway, R.A., 1890, no.116, p.29.

    Caroline, only daughter of an Irish peer, Lord Duncannon (later 3rd Earl Bessborough), and his wife Lady Henrietta, daughter of the first Earl Spencer. There is much confusion as to how Caro (as she was known) was brought up, not the least because she had a propensity for the dramatic and for creating new pasts for herself that sounded more tragic than the original. However it seems likely from records and what is known of her grandmother, the redoutable Countess Spencer, that she spent her early years and education at Devonshire house under the chaperonage of her Aunt, Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire. It was here that Caro was first seen by William Melbourne, the second son of Lord Melbourne and his ambitious wife, Lady Melbourne. Lady Melbourne was eager to promote a match that would tie her family and their ambitions to the political power of the Devonshire House set, luckily William fell for Caro and by the time she was 17 they were married. Despite good beginnings, their marriage began to fray slightly, compounded by the fact that Caro did not get on with her mother-in-law, who found Caro's lack of discretion unacceptable.
    In 1812 she met George Gordon Lord Byron. He was had just published 'Childe Harolde's Pilgrimage'. They began a much recognised and indiscreet affair that lasted a tempestuous four months. Byron ended the affair much to Caro's displeasure. She then spent the next four years pursuing him. Her family packed her off to the country and urged her husband to divorce her. Byron avoided her, seeking refuge for sometime with his new mistress, Lady Oxford, and eventually marrying a cousin of Caro's husband, Annabella Milbanke. It is for this affair that she is best known, and oft quoted for coining him 'mad bad and dangerous to know,' It was perhaps a phrase as appropriate to apply to herself as Byron.
Auction information

This sale is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future sales, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this sale, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Wine, Coins & Medals and Motor Cars and Motorcycles:

Buyer's Premium Rates
25% on the first £50,000 of the Hammer Price
20% from £50,001 to £1,000,000 the Hammer Price
12% from £1,000,001 of the Hammer Price

VAT at the current rate of 20% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges excluding Artists Resale Right.

Payment Notices

Payment in advance: by cash, check with banker's card, credit card, bank draft or traveler's cheque.

Payment at collection: by credit or debit card.

Credit card charges: a surcharge of 2% is applicable when using Mastercard, Visa and overseas debit cards.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licenses please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

Similar Items