Portrait of Deborah Franklin, 1758-1759
American Philosophical...
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American Philosophical Society, Philadelphia (before conservation)

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Franklin commissioned portraits of himself and his wife for his homes in Philadelphia and London. This portrait was painted about the same time as Wilson's portrait of Franklin. The portraits hung together in Franklin Court until 1778, when his portrait was taken as a prize of war by John André during the British army's occupation of Philadelphia. The portrait is not signed; its attribution to Wilson is based on Franklin's correspondence.

The image is of a pleasant-faced matron whose curling chestnut hair has an ornament at its center part (white, suggesting pearls or paste diamonds). Her rounded face is set in a very slight smile. She wears a gown of rose violet and strong teal blue that contrasts attractively with her ample bosom. Broad folds of blue close the image.

Connection to Franklin
Portrait of his wife commissioned by Franklin
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