Herbert Duckworth died unexpectedly in September
1870 at the age of thirty seven on a trip to Wales. Julia and
Herbert Duckworth were visiting Julia’s sister Adeline and
her husband Henry Halford Vaughan at Upton Castle, Pembrokeshire.
Herbert stretched to pick a fig, burst an abscess, and died within
twenty-four hours. Julia was eight months pregnant at the time.
As she later told Leslie Stephen: “I was only 24 when it
all seemed a shipwreck, and I knew that I had to live on and on...
And so I got deadened.”
In this picture, Julia is dressed in mourning. “She became
a kind of sister of mercy. Whenever there was trouble, death or
illness in her family, the first thing was to send for Julia,
whether to comfort survivors or to nurse the patients.”