The sitter was the daughter of Joseph Foster-Barham (1729-1789) and his wife Dorothea, daughter of Erasmus Vaughan of Trecwn in Pembrokeshire, Wales. Her father was a Moravian lay preacher, and the family held extensive estates in the West Indies, notably the Jamaican estates of Bogue, Elim, Lancaster and Mesopotamia, and he established the Moravian church on Jamaica in 1754. In 1785 she married George Livius (1743-1816), who had been born in Lisbon and served as Commissary General of the East India Company in Calcutta, under Warren Hastings, and was a close friend of Sir Philip Francis (1740-1818). The couple had one daughter, Maria Livius (1789-1864), who married the Rev. Dr John Johnson. By family tradition the landscape in this portrait is an allusion to the Blue Mountains in Jamaica, and refers to the source of her family’s prosperity.