George Frederic Watts’s portrait of Violet Lindsay is a highly significant painting both in terms of its artist and its subject.

Watts was one of the most celebrated British artists of the Victorian age, famous for his range of subjects across social realism and portraiture. This painting is one of his most important works remaining in private hands.

Violet Lindsay sat for the portrait around 1879, aged about 23. In 1882, she married Henry Manners, later Marquis of Granby and Duke of Rutland. She was a member of the intellectual circle known as the Souls, and an artist in her own right. She was the mother of the socialite Lady Diana Cooper.

The portrait, which was widely exhibited and admired in Watts’s lifetime, now joins the collection of the Watts Gallery, the museum established by the artist in 1904.


Retained by artist; sold to Baron Wantage in 1901; by family descent until 1945 when given by C.L Loyd to Lady Violet Benson (the sitter’s daughter); thence by descent.

Exhibitions at Watts Gallery – Artists' Village

Back to top