Collection Online

Susanna Highmore
(c. 1740-1745)

oil on canvas
91.5 × 71.1 cm
Accession Number
International Painting
Credit Line
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Felton Bequest, 1947
Gallery location
18th Century Decorative Arts & Paintings Gallery
Level 2, NGV International

This delightful portrait of the artist’s daughter, Susanna, shows why she was known to be a provocative beauty. Susanna, who loved animals, is accompanied by her two cats and a parrot perched on a swinging ring. The antics of Poll the parrot were described by John Hawkesworth, a family friend, in verse in April 1750: ‘Whilst Poll’s in gilded prison hung, / Singing to all (himself unsung) / Pho! Out! Fie for shame! / …Tho’ Poll’s a saucy rogue.’