This painting, also known as 'Amy,' appears to have been an oil study for the landscape in 'The Long Engagement' (1902P13). The subject matter is very similar although in this composition the man is absent. Here, the young woman, Amy, appears to be waiting for her lover. As she adjusts her hair in preparation for meeting him, her eye rests on her name carved in the bark of the tree. Hanging from the tree are branches of ivy, symbolising the passing of time, and suggesting that the couple have been meeting secretly over a long period.Hughes used the shawl worn by Amy in his later painting 'April Love' (1855-56, oil on canvas, Tate, London).

  • Purchased, 1925.
  • © Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery


Association Artist Organisation
Artist Arthur Hughes -


Type Position(s) Method Date(s) Notes
Amy / A Hughes
Inscription - Painted - Oil paint.


Catalogue No. Venue Date(s)
The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood
28 City Museum and Art Gallery, Birmingham 1947-06-07 - 1947-07-27
The Pre-Raphaelites
32 Whitechapel Art Gallery, London 1948-04-08 - 1948-05-12
Loan Exhibition of Pictures from the City Art Gallery Birmingham
94 Thomas Agnews & Sons, London 1957-03-27 - 1957-05-04
Theodore Fontane and the Visual Arts
43 Alte National Galerie, Berlin 1998 - 1998


Author(s) Date(s) Publisher Pages
Pre-Raphaelite Painters
John Gere, Robin Ironside 1948 Phaidon, London p. 43
Victorian Painting
Graham Reynolds 1966 Studio Vista repr. p. 81
Arthur Hughes: The Lady with the Lilacs
Karen Finlay 1988 Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto p. 5
William Maw Egley's 'The Talking Oak'
Susan P Casteras 1990 Bulletin of the Detroit Institute of Art p. 35; repr. p. 33
Visions of Love and Life: Pre-Raphaelite Art from the Birmingham Collection, England
Stephen Wildman 1995 Art Services International, Alexandria, Virginia p. 177; repr. p. 175
Theodore Fontane and the Visual Arts
1998 Alte National Galerie, Berlin p. 91; repr. p. 91


Benjamin Godfrey Windus; Windus sale, Christie's 19 July 1862, lot. no. 38; bought (in ?) for 35 gns. by Rhodes, and 15 February 1868 (273); bought for 10 gns. by Thomas Agnew & Sons; bought from them on 17 February 1868 by William Graham.

Related work & resources

Discuss this work

Start a discussion about this work.

You need to login to discuss this work. Click here to login.

If you are not yet registered click here to become a member.
Find out more about membership