Mrs Oliver

LL 3132


This was probably intended as a wedding portrait and begun shortly before Mary Shakespeare's marriage to Laver Oliver in 1785. However, it was not completed until 1788, and was subsequently altered to permit the inclusion of the couple's first child. According to anecdote Romney painted in the baby in half an hour. The handling is free and conveys an effect of bravura, but this might equally be taken as evidence of Romney's increasing impatience with the routine of portraiture.