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Beetham, Isabella, Mrs (McKechnie Section 4)

See Section Three for main entry

One advertisement (1792) by Mrs Beetham includes the phrase, 'She likewise finishes them on IVORY, COMPOSITION, AND PAPER’. Since the term composition, at this date, was normally used to mean a plaster surface, it seems that Mrs Beetham was offering silhouettes on plaster. l know of no generally accepted record of any examples. In Section One I have illustrated a silhouette of Marie Antoinette. which, on stylistic grounds, can definitely be ascribed to Mrs Beetham and is described by Mills as being made from cut paper stuck to plaster. Rudolph L Mégroz (Profile Art through the Ages, London, 1948), on the other hand, states that it is painted on plaster. I have not seen the silhouette itself; on assessing the style from Mills's illustration, I consider that his description is probably correct.