Col. Nathaniel Darby

  • Unidentified, Col. Nathaniel Darby, ca. 1798, watercolor on ivory, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Natalie Brooks Sears Shippen and William Brush Shippen, 1999.87.7A

Luce Center Label

It is not always possible to identify the sitter in a miniature portrait, and research is still being done on some of the works in the Museum’s collection. Miniatures became popular in England during the early 1700s, commissioned by wealthy families on the occasions of births, engagements, weddings, and bereavements. These paintings, elaborately set into lockets or brooches, provided the wearer with a sentimental connection to a loved one. The back of the miniature often revealed a lock of the sitter’s hair, symbolizing affection, commitment, or loss.

Col. Nathaniel Darby
ca. 1798
On View
Not on view.
sight 2 x 1 5/8 in. (5.1 x 4.0 cm) oval
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Gift of Natalie Brooks Sears Shippen and William Brush Shippen

Mediums Description
watercolor on ivory
  • Portrait male – Darby, Nathaniel, Col. – bust
  • Occupation – military – colonel
Object Number
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI