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This type of painting became popular in the first half of the eighteenth century with the rise of the middle-class in England and, with it, a growing demand for portraiture to record the intimate detail of home life. It reflects an increasing relaxation in the relationship between parent and child, as children were no longer expected to behave like adults and the benefits of play and the role of the mother in child-rearing were increasingly recognised.
oil on sculpted board
H 8.9 x W 10.2 cm
on loan from a private collection