- Exhibition Label
- Born Kennett Square, Pennsylvania
- Bayard Taylor, a well-known author and lecturer in the United States during the middle of the nineteenth century, began his literary career as a poet and travel writer. In his popular Poems of the Orient (1854), he penned romanticized impressions of the people and places he encountered while traveling through North Africa, the Middle East, and Asia between 1851 and 1853. The year after publishing this collection, Taylor commissioned the artist Thomas Hicks to paint his portrait.
- First exhibited under the title Morning in Damascus, the painting shows the poet dressed in Arab attire and lounging with a hookah pipe while on a hilltop overlooking the Syrian city. Taylor, who was born into a Pennsylvania Quaker family, often circulated images of himself masquerading in foreign garb as a way to promote himself as worldly and to create an air of authenticity around his fanciful accounts of distant lands.
- (Berry-Hill Galleries, New York); purchased 1976 NPG
- Data Source
- National Portrait Gallery
- Thomas Hicks, 18 Oct 1823 - 8 Oct 1890
- Bayard Taylor, 11 Jan 1825 - 19 Dec 1878
- Credit Line
- National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
- Oil on canvas
- 62.2 x 75.6cm (24 1/2 x 29 3/4")
- Frame: 76.2 x 88.6 x 6.4cm (30 x 34 7/8 x 2 1/2")
This image is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Open Access page.