Mrs. Jameson was the eldest daughter of the Irish miniature painter D. Brownell Murphy, who moved with his family to England in 1798. At the age of sixteen she became a governess in the family of the Marquis of Winchester, the first of several such positions. She toured France and Italy as a governess, leading to the publication of A Lady's Diary in 1826. The previous year she married (unhappily) Robert Jameson, afterwards speaker and attorney-general of the province of Toronto. Her biographical memoirs and works on sacred art were very successful, some republished into the twentieth century.
A first or mother's dictionary for children. 1825?
The diary of an ennuyee. 1826.
The loves of the poets. 2 vols, 1829.
Memoires of celebrated female sovereigns. 2 vols, 1831.
Characteristics of women, moral, poetical, and historical [Shakespeare's Heroines]. 2 vols, 1832.
Beauties of the court of Charles the second. 1833.
Visits and sketches at home and abroad. 4 vols, 1834.
The romance of biography: or memoirs of women loved and celebrated by the poets. 2 vols, 1837.
Sketches of Germany. 1837.
Winter studies and summer rambles in Canada. 3 vols, 1838.
Memoires of the early Italian painters and of the progress of painting in Italy from Cimabue to Bassanto. 2 vols, 1845.
Memoirs and essays, illustrative of art, literature and social morals. 1846.
Sacred and legendary art. 2 vols, 1848.
Legends of the monastic orders as represented in the fine arts. 1850.
A commonplace book of thoughts, memories, and fancies. 1854.
Sisters of charity, Catholic and Protestant, abroad and at home. 1855.
The communion of labour: a second lecture on the social employments of women. 1856.
The history of our Lord as exemplified in works of art [completed by Lady Eastlake]. 2 vols, 1864.
Jameson's works. 10 vols, 1885, 1900-1911.