A nice example of a miniature portrait, painted by Nathaniel Hancock on organic material. The sitter is a woman in a blue gown with a lace edged bodice. The gold case has chamfered glass on the front, and the reverse identifies the sitter as "Ridgely 1791."
The condition of this little gem is very fine, with no flaws to speak of. There was some minimal clean-up of a few painting drips in the background. Overall size is 1 3/4" by 1 1/2".
BIOGRAPHICAL NOTE: Information about Hancock is relatively sparse and with little depth, aside from an excellent article at:
Hancock was primarily active from 1786 to 1809, working mostly in Boston, with some intermittent travel within MA and to VA, NH, and ME. His first newspaper ad appeared in 1789, two years before his marriage to Elizabeth Welsh, who died one year later.
Hancock died at the age of 71 at the McLean Asylum for the Insane in Charlestown, Massachusetts. Details have yet to be found about his stay there.