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Margaret Godley

‘Margaret en Maori’, Charlotte and John Robert Godley’s 5th and youngest child Margaret Godley, in ‘A study of a Maori Lady in traditional dress’.
The watercolour is painted in 1863 by Charlotte’s favourite sister, Frances, the recipient of some of Charlotte’s famous ‘Letters from Early New Zealand’.

Margaret Godley is born after the Godleys’ return to England. John Robert’s early death, in 1861, has left Charlotte a young widow, full of memories. The farewell greenstone gift of a ceremonial artefact to Godley, by the Te Ahuriri chief, would have a prominent place in the Godley’s London household.
The stories, impressions and human anecdotes of the Godleys’ experiences with the Maori (some delightfully recounted in Charlotte’s published letters) would fascinate the English-born daughters and, here, produce a warm, family response in this charming little watercolour.

‘Margaret en Maori’ by Frances Elizabeth Wynne 1863

Article and photo courtesy of Haydn Rawstron - John Robert Godley Memorial Trust
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