Anna Maria Tree
Viola : Twelfth Night
Watercolour on ivory
Unknown, acquired before 1909
RW 427A ? (unknown sitter by Richard Cosway)
1821 London, R. A. (868)
2001-02 London, Courtauld Gallery "'Art on the Line' - the Royal Academy Exhibitions at Somerset House 1780-1836"
William Holl for “Dramatical and Musical Magazine” (April 1823) pub. Beale and T. Holt, stipple (vignette, cut at elbows and either side of shoulders)
Viola looks after the departing Malvolio, who has given her the ring that Olivia pretends Viola left behind (Act II, scene 2). She holds the ring gingerly in her yellow-gloved left hand, and has a black hat with a feather round the brim in her right. Her male costume consists of a vaguely military brown-orange tunic with black and white piping, an orange-brown belt with a gold buckle, and a dagger with a gold hilt. The costume is similar to, and a foretaste of, principal boy costumes of the later 19th century.
“Twelfth Night” was revived at Covent Garden on 8 November 1820, with Ann Maria Tree as Viola, and played for 17 nights during the season.