Sunday, June 17, 2012

Mrs. William Morris

Mrs. William Morris (Jane Burden, 1840–1914)
Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Red, black, and white chalk on paper
Sheet: 35 3/4 x 30 3/4 in. (90.8 x 78.1 cm)

This drawing is a study for the painting Mariana of 1870, now in the Aberdeen City Art Gallery and Museum (no. 21/8). The subject illustrates Act IV, Scene 1 of Shakespeare's Measure for Measure. Mariana sits listening to the words of a song, "Take, O take, those lips away..." The Metropolitan Museum's study differs slightly from the finished painting: there is a vase of flowers in the place of the singing boy, and Mariana holds a sycamore branch instead of the embroidery in the painting.

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