CHILDREN OF WILLIAM COBBETT (1763-1835)
COBBETT FAMILY. A group of three silhouettes in matching oval frames (4 x 5 inches) each identified on the reverse by ink inscriptions in the same hand:
1. A painted silhouette of a girl facing right, inscribed on the back "Susan Cobbett (aunt Susan) Kensington 1822".
2. A painted silhouette of a girl facing left, inscribed on the back "Eleanor Cobbett (aunt Ellen) Kensington 1822".
3. A hollow cut silhouette of a boy facing right, inscribed on a fragmented label on the back "...... ....[P]aul Cobbett ...... ....[B]otley 1811. (uncle James)".
The style and fine detail of the two painted female silhouettes are suggestive of the work of the London silhouettists John Field or Joshua Trewinnard.
These portraits are of three of the eight children of the famous political writer and farmer William Cobbett (1763-1835) and his wife Anne Reid (1774-1845) who he had married in 1792. After their return from America in 1819 William Cobbett bought a 4 acre farm in Kensington village where they settled in 1821. The three children pictured here were all born in Botley, Hampshire.
James Paul Cobbett (1803-1881) was a writer and edited his father's best known work Rural Rides.
Eleanor Cobbett (1805-1900) became a governess, never married, and lived at the end of her life with her nephew's family (William & Fanny Cobbett). Eleanor retained in her possession her father's unpublished amended version of his Life of Paine, which she released for publication in D.M. Conway’s Life of Thomas Paine in 1892.
Susan Cobbett (1807-1889) like her sister Eleanor worked as a governess and never married. In later life she lived with her sisters Anne and Eleanor.