After the death of her father Eliot accompanied Charles and Cara Bray on a trip to Europe. Six weeks later the Brays returned home. Eliot stayed in Geneva and lodged with the Durade family. Monsieur Francois D’Albert-Durade was an artist and in February 1850 he painted Eliot’s portrait.
A number of Eliot’s contemporaries commented on her plain looks, but Durade has portrayed her in an attractive light. Perhaps he sensed her inner intelligence and creativity and wanted to draw attention to this.
In 1881, shortly after Eliot’s death, her husband John Cross commissioned the artist to make this copy.