These are early nude studies for four figures in Ford Madox Brown's painting 'Chaucer at the Court of Edward III' (1851, oil on canvas, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney). The figure in the top right of the drawing is the man on the right in the foreground talking to his friend whilst making notes. The figure in the top right is the troubadour who sits in the centre of the painting. The standing figure holding a tray is the steward on the far right in the background bringing water and glasses, and the final seated figure is the page boy in the centre, listening intently and leaning on the lady sitting in front of the fountain. When signing this work Brown crossed out London, replaced it with Rome and dated it 1845. This date is likely to be correct because the steward appears in a compositional study now at the Cecil Higgins Art Gallery, Bedford. This is an example of Brown back dating his studies.LM

  • Purchased and presented by subscribers, 1906.
  • © Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery


Association Artist Organisation
Artist Ford Madox Brown -


Type Position(s) Method Date(s) Notes
Ford M Brown London [crossed out] Rome/45
Signature and date bottom right Handwritten 1845 Brown ink.


Author(s) Date(s) Publisher Pages
Ford Madox Brown: a Record of his Life and Works
F M Hueffer 1896 Longman, Green and Longman, London repr. pp. 447 et seq.
City of Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery: Catalogue of the Permanent Collection of Drawings
A E Whitley 1939 Bemrose & Sons Ltd, Derby p. 31
Ford Madox Brown: The Unofficial Pre-Raphaelite
Laura MacCulloch, Tessa Sidey 2008 D. Giles Limited, London p. 64

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