Mrs Maria Anne Fitzherbert (1756-1837) Famous Beauty
- About the work
About the artist
Richard Cosway was born in Tiverton, Devon, the son of a schoolmaster. He took drawing lessons in London from the age of twelve and won his first prize from the Society of Artists in 1754. Six years later he had established a successful business and continued to exhibit his work in London from the 1760s to the turn of the 19th century. Cosway was one of the founder-members of the Royal Academy and was made Principal Painter to the Prince of Wales in 1785. In 1781, he married the Anglo-Italian artist and composer Maria Hadfield. They were one of the most fashionable couples in society, before their separation in 1801. Cosway died in 1821 and was buried at Marylebone New Church.