La Belle Dame Sans Merci

Dante Gabriel Rossetti

General Description

Date: 1848 April


◦ Marillier, DGR: An Illustrated Memorial, 16, 17, 53.

◦ Mégroz, Painter Poet of Heaven in Earth, 49.

◦ Surtees, A Catalogue Raisonné, vol. 1, 7 (no. 32).

Scholarly Commentary


Keats was one of the most important influences on DGR's writing style as well as his imagination in general. This is the earliest of three different illustrations he conceived for Keats's famous poem “La Belle Dame Sans Merci”.

Production History

DGR made this drawing for the Cyclographic Society. A later watercolour is a different composition, as is the striking but unfinished drawing in the British Museum that illustrates stanza 5 of Keats's ballad (which is inscribed by DGR on the drawing).


This drawing, like the later watercolour, illustrates stanza 4 of Keats's ballad.

Electronic Archive Edition: 1
Source File: s32.raw.xml