Sarah Siddons as the Tragic Muse

Sir Joshua Reynolds


Physical Description

Medium: oil on canvas
Dimensions: 94 1/4 x 58 1/8 in.

Production Description

Production Date: 1784
Exhibition History: Royal Academy, 1784


Current Location: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens, San Marino, CA
Catalog Number: 21.02
Archival History: Purchased from Reynolds by Noel Desenfans, February 1790, for Charles Alexandre de Calonne; Calonne sale, Skinner & Dyke, March 28, 1795 (lot 97); purchased by William Smith, Norwich; sold privately to George Watson Taylor; Taylor sale, Christie's, June 13, 1823 (lot 64); purchased by Robert, 2nd Earl of Grosvenor, later 1st Marquess of Westminster; by descent to Hugh, 2nd Duke of Westminster; his sale, Christie's, July 4, 1919 (lot 25), bought in; sold to Duveen; acquired by Henry E. Huntington, 1921

Scholarly Commentary


In the early years of the PRB and DGR's career, Reynolds represented the unprogressive character of Royal Academy instruction. Dubbed "Sloshua", his name became associated with a loose and careless style of painting, apparent in a sketch by DGR. WMR notes that DGR's distaste for Reynolds was fueled if not inspired by the sentiments of William Blake ( Family Letters , 109, 157).


Electronic Archive Edition: 1
File Name: op133.rap.xml