Originally when I began this post I intended to do it with a jumble of paintings. But of course, once I got carried away with the portraits I realized I had to divide the paintings up by categories. The portraits of husbands and wives served a new purpose in the 18th century as previously discussed. Instead of showing the man's vast wealth and property (wife included in that) these now displayed the sitter's Enlightened sense of family values and even love for his spouse. With the rise in the sense of woman's rights by ladies such as Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Robinson, these portraits displayed the new sense of unity between husband and wife. Showing affection toward one's spouse is something that shows one's superior character, not lack thereof. Take into account also how the couples are usually placed in nature; another Enlightenment sensibility.
Thomas Gainsborough, Mr. and Mrs. William Hallett, 1785
Henry Raeburn, Sir John and Lady Clerk, 1790
Thomas Gainsborough, Mr. and Mrs. Andrews, 1750
William Hogarth, David Garrick and his Wife, 1757
Women and Children