The perception of Boadicea in British fine art of the long nineteenth century, 1789-1914

Start - End 
2012 - 2017 (ongoing)
Research Focus 
Research Period 
Additional tags 
English literature
Celtic art
Image of women



While Joan of Arc has been widely acknowledged as the patron saint of the suffrage movement, the influence of Boadicea on the movement has been largely unexplored. Boadicea, the historical Celtic warrior queen who led a rebellion against the Romans in AD 60-61, had the right to vote and to stand for election. Her position contrasted sharply with the position of the disenfranchised nineteenth-century British women.This project aims to study the perception of her depiction in nine case studies of British fine art (1789-1914) which confronted the British public with her position in Celtic society. Her perception in relation to national identity and gender will be assessed by means of a comparative analysis of the reviews in the contemporary periodical press, the personal papers of the artists and the women’s rights activists. This analysis will demonstrate the significant impact of her depiction on the demand of ‘Votes for Women’.




Phd Student(s)