Jane Morris seated in wicker chair, full length

Dante Gabriel Rossetti and John Parsons

1865 June

Physical Description

Medium: photography
Technique: collodion print
Dimensions: 19.2 x 13.3 cm

Production Description

Production Date: 1865 June


Current Location: Victoria and Albert Museum
Catalog Number: 1739/1939
Note: The Victoria and Albert has a second copy, somewhat larger, and the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery also has a copy.

Scholarly Commentary


At least three copies of this pose survive, one in the Birmingham City Museum and Art Gallery, the other two in the Victoria and Albert Museum's Album of Portraits of Mrs. William Morris (Jane Burden), Posed by Rossetti, 1865 . This the smaller of the two V & A prints.

The state of the two Victoria and Albert Museum prints tells much about DGR's involvement with these photographs. In the V & A's other, larger copy a good deal of space is left around the sitter, who is seated in DGR's garden, in full view, and facing to her right. A decorated screen is placed a few feet behind her; beyond that is foliage, though it is scarcely discernible as such. The print shows where Gordon Bottomly worked on the original print with a brush to disguise where the top of the print had been damaged during later efforts to mount it.

This paired print in the album shows DGR intervening on the original photograph. In this case he has used a brush to paint on the print and smooth out Mrs. Morris's dress (along the left sleeve and also among the folds by her left leg). The second print also illustrates a characteristic alteration of another kind that one finds in the album prints. This second print is much lighter and has been cropped so that the screen takes up virtually the whole of the background.

Production History

This is a modern print made sometime shortly before Bottomly put the album of prints together for May Morris.


  • Bartram, Pre-Raphaelite Photography , 38-40.
  • Bartram, The Pre-Raphaelite Camera, chapter 5.
  • DGR 1828–1882: An Exhibition [Tokyo 1990], 185 (no. 147).
Copyright: © V&A Picture Library
Electronic Archive Edition: 1
File Name: sa140a.rap.xml