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Phoebe Anna Traquair









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Traquair's murals, easel paintings, embroideries, book illustrations and jewellery brought her international recognition, as one of the most accomplished artists of the Arts and Crafts movement. She was originally from Dublin but moved to Edinburgh after her marriage to Dr Ramsay Traquair, Keeper of Natural History at the Royal Scottish Museum. She played a significant and practical role in the promotion of decorative art in public buildings, for example, through her murals in the Sick Children's Hospital. In 1920 Traquair was among the first women to be made an honorary member of the Royal Scottish Academy.

Phoebe Anna Traquair (; 24 May 1852 – 4 August 1936) was an Irish-born artist, who achieved international recognition for her role in the Arts and Crafts movement in Scotland, as an illustrator, painter and embroiderer. Her works included large-scale murals, embroidery, enamel jewellery and book illuminations. In 1920, she was elected as an honorary member of the Royal Scottish Academy.

ID: 7186650

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The murals Traquair painted in the St Mary's Song School, Edinburgh (1882-9; in situ), are among the most distinguished of their kind. She also painted many frescoes in the catholic church in Edinburgh beginning in 1893.

ID: 500034817

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Glossary Terms


Arts and Crafts

British movement of the late nineteenth century which sought to revive handcrafts and improve design in an age of increasing mass-production. Key thinkers associated with the movement are William Morris and John Ruskin.


The term is used broadly to describe a decorative horizontal band running along the top of a wall inside or outside a building. It can also describe the decoration on the body of a vase or a decorative band along a piece of furniture.



A group of mid-nineteenth-century artists inspired by the simplicity of pre-Renaissance Italian art, the name meaning 'before Raphael'. They favoured a close observation of nature and rejected academic rules. They drew on literature for subject matter and were closely associated with the Arts and Crafts movement. Members included John Everett Millais and Dante Gabriel Rossetti.