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Mrs. Perez Morton (1759-1846)
Date: ca. 1840-1850
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Medium: Watercolor on ivory
Dimensions: Overall: 4 1/2 x 3 3/8 in. ( 11.4 x 8.6 cm )
Credit Line: Gift of the Estate of Thomas Jefferson Bryan
Object Number: 1867.382
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Sarah Wentworth Apthorp was the daughter of James and Sarah (Wentworth) Apthorp of Boston. She married Perez Morton, a lawyer of Boston, in 1781. Throughout the 1790s her poetry, published under the pseudonym Philenia, won her fame at home and abroad; she was called the American Sappho. Mrs. Morton met Gilbert Stuart in 1802 when she visited Philadelphia and they became great friends. He painted her likeness three times: Staigg copied the portrait now owned by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.


The Thomas Jefferson Bryan Collection


THE METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART, New York, 1927 (as "Portrait of a Lady")
THE METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART, New York, 11/20/90- 2/10/91, NATIONAL MUSEUM OF AMERICAN ART, Washington, 3/29/91-6/16/91, ART INSTITUTE OF CHICAGO, Illinois, 9/1/91-11/19/91, "Tokens of Affection: The Portrait in Miniature America";