Lady Godiva

Image credit: Herbert Art Gallery & Museum

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The publication of Alfred Lord Tennyson's poem about Lady Godiva in 1842 revived interest in her and made the legend of her ride widely known. The vivid detail of the poem encouraged artists to paint specific episodes from the story.

Claxton painted this only a few years after Tennyson's poem was published. Godiva stands under an arch about to mount the horse to begin her ride. She is shown from the back, perhaps because of the Victorian sensitivity to nudity. The dog that is annoying the horse is the 'barking cur' in Tennyson's poem.

Herbert Art Gallery & Museum



Lady Godiva




oil on canvas


H 61 x W 51 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

gift from Mrs B. Westermann, 1958

Work type



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Normally on display at

Herbert Art Gallery & Museum

Jordan Well, Coventry, West Midlands CV1 5QP England

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