The Bower Meadow
Rossetti, Dante Gabriel
Europe, United Kingdom, England, Kent, Sevenoaks
First floor: Pre-Raphaelites
86.3 x 68.0 cm
The Bower Meadow 1850-1872
Dante Gabriel Rossetti 1828-1882
Oil on canvas
Rossetti painted the background of this work
outdoors at Sevenoaks, Kent, in 1850,
in the company of Holman Hunt.
It was originally intended for a large-scale version
of Dante meeting Beatrice in Paradise,
a watercolour of which is in Manchester's collection.
He took up the canvas twenty years later
by which time his style had become more lyrical.
His earlier watercolour may still have been in his mind
with its two medieval 'angels' playing psalteries
in a paradise garden.
Painted after what he called his 'time of love'
with Jane Morris at Kelmscott Manor,
it evokes an undefined feeling of poetic melancholy
but was not accompanied by a poem as was usual
with many of his major works.