St. John Comforting the Virgin at the Foot of the Cross

Dante Gabriel Rossetti

General Description

Date: 1857-1858
Subject: “The Virgin kneels at the foot of the Cross and is comforted by St. John; two women are approaching while a third is seen in the distance, driving off a flock of ravens” ( Surtees, A Catalogue Raisonné, vol. 1, 57).


◦ Marillier, DGR: An Illustrated Memorial, 117

◦ Surtees, A Catalogue Raisonné, 57-58 (no. 104).

Scholarly Commentary


The drawing may have been a preliminary study for an untraced watercolour he had completed by late May 1862 (see DGR's letter to Ellen Heaton, 28 May 1862 ( Fredeman, Correspondence, 62. 35 ). It should be compared with the Mary in the House of St. John watercolour, completed in 1858.

Production History

There are two pen and ink studies of this subject, one now at the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, and another whose whereabouts are unknown. The latter depicts St. John leading the Virgin Mary away from the cross.

Electronic Archive Edition: 1
Source File: s104.raw.xml