About this object

The sitter in this portrait was co-heiress, with her sister Elizabeth, of the London linen draper John Rodbard (died 1780). However, she may not have been his natural daughter, but adopted. On 9 November 1786, at the age of 21, Sarah married Major (afterwards General Sir Eyre) Coote, to whom she bore three daughters, Susan, Sarah Anne and Catherine. She died aged 30 at Clifton near Bristol on 30 October 1795.

The portrait, one of the masterpieces of the British artist George Romney's later years, was painted in 1784. X-rays taken during cleaning in 1997 confirm that Romney originally intended to paint Miss Rodbard gazing to her right rather than towards the spectator, and to drape her in a cloak. He also reduced the size of the bow at her waist.

Object specifics

  • Artist(s)
    George Romney (British, born:1734-12-26, died:1802-11-15)
  • Date
  • Materials
    Oil paint; Canvas
  • Measurements
    canvas/support: 240.5 cm x 148 cm
  • Physical description
    Full length portrait of a woman wearing a white dress. She is turned to her right and embraces a small white dog with both hands which is sitting on a pedestal beside her.
  • Related people
    Agnew's Gallery (Previous owner) ; Christie’s (Previous owner) ; Eyre Coote (Previous owner) ; William Hesketh Lever (Previous owner) ; George Romney (Artist/maker)
  • Other number(s)
    Accession Number: LL 3539; Out of Use Accession Number: WHL 50; Out of Use Accession Number: H 10
  • Credit line
    Purchased by William Hesketh Lever in 1903
  • Location
    Lady Lever Art Gallery, Room 06
  • Collection
    From the Lady Lever Art Gallery collections


Previous owners

  • William Hesketh Lever

    Owned from: 1903-04
    How acquired: Purchased from Agnew £12,000
    Owned until: 1925
    Disposal method: Unknown or unrecorded
  • Agnew's Gallery

    Owned from: 1902-06-14
    How acquired: Purchased from Christie's (120) 10,500 gns
    Owned until: 1903-04
    Disposal method: Sold to William Hesketh Lever £12,000
  • Christie’s

    Owned from: Unknown or unrecorded
    How acquired: Unknown or unrecorded
    Owned until: 1902-06-14
    Disposal method: Sold to Agnew (120)
  • Eyre Coote

    Owned from: Unknown or unrecorded
    How acquired: by descent
    Owned until: Unknown or unrecorded
    Disposal method: Unknown or unrecorded
Object view = Fine Art
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