Lover’s eyes were popular in the late 18th and early 19th centuries among the affluent classes in England, Europe and America. They were first popularized in 1785, when George IV, then Prince of Wales, sent one to the widow Maria Fitzherbert as a token of his love.
Timothy Ruggles Green, the scion of a family based in Worcester and Providence, died in Whitehall, Georgia in 1840, but he and Cornelia had two children born and raised in Providence, Frances Mary Green Wayland, and Arnold Green. Arnold Green’s most famous son may well Theodore Francis Green, the senator from Rhode Island.
Last summer, we digitized the sampler collection, which you can view online here. This summer, we chose the miniatures for digitization, and they’ll be coming to an online gallery. Cataloging and photographing the collections is always interesting. After all, it’s not every day you find a painting of a senator’s grandfather’s eye!
~Kirsten Hammerstrom, Director of Collections