Sketch for The Woodman’s Daughter (1850)

Millais, John Everett (1829-1896)

Sketch for The Woodman’s Daughter
Graphite with touches of pen and brown ink, 24.4 x 17.2 cm
Princeton University Art MuseumPrinceton

This small graphite sketch is a study for a celebrated painting from 1851 by Millais now in the Guildhall Art GalleryLondon. The composition illustrates lines from The Woodman’s Daughter by the Victorian poet Coventry Patmore (1823–96), first published in 1844. Much admired by the Pre-Raphaelites, Patmore’s poem tells the tragic tale of Maud, a poor woodman’s daughter who is happy in her childhood innocence before she is seduced over time by the wealthy squire’s son, who ultimately abandons her with their illegitimate child. In the drawing, as in the finished painting, Millais represents Maud guilelessly receiving strawberries from the squire’s son, rendered with the graphic simplicity of a fairytale. (PUAM)


Millais, John Everett (1829-1896)
The Woodman’s Daughter
Guildhall Art GalleryLondon



See also:

Patmore, Coventry (1823-1896)