This charming portrait miniature was painted by Charlotte Brontë, the eldest of the three Brontë sisters and author of Jane Eyre.

It shows Sophia Hudson, a friend of the Brontës who hosted Charlotte and her friend Ellen Nussey in 1839. This portrait was probably painted during that stay. Charlotte gave the portrait to Hudson as a gift, and it was passed on first to her niece, then to her son, before going missing in 1895. It resurfaced in 2001 at a sale in Nottingham and was bought by miniatures collector Esme Valerie Eliot, widow of the poet T. S. Eliot. In 1990 Valerie had established the Old Possum’s Practical Trust, a charity to support projects in the arts, and following her death in 2012 the miniature was put up for sale through the trust.


Gifted to the Hudsons of Easton Farm by the artist; by descent until 1895 when registered missing; in the collection of Dick Gouldthorp by 1997; by whom sold at Neales, 2001 where acquired by Mrs T S Eliot. An Art Loss Register certificate has been suppli

Brontë Parsonage Museum

Church Street, Haworth, Keighley, West Yorkshire, BD22 8DR
01535 642323

Opening times

Apr – Sep
Daily, 10am – 5.30pm

Oct – Mar
Daily, 10am – 5pm

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