A preparotory sketch for a series of four paintings based on an episode from William Morris' cycle of epic poems, 'The Earthly Paradise'. The first series is currently in the collection of Lord Lloyd-Webber, the second series are in Birmingham's collection.The overall composition of this sketch and the two later oils are basically the same, with a few minor differences. The first is the vase to the left of Pygmalion's hand, which does not appear in either oil version. Also, the sculpture has a sprig of myrtle or laurel in her hands, which Burne-Jones has omitted from its oil counterparts. Lastly, this study lacks a fountain seen through the window in the centre of the drawing, and the circular pattern of the glass is continued throughout the window, rather than just comprising a third of the window panes as in the paintings.

  • Bequeathed by James Richardson Holliday, 1927.
  • © Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery


Association Artist Organisation
Artist Sir Edward Burne-Jones -


Catalogue No. Venue Date(s)
Edward Burne-Jones: Pygmalion Series Centenary Exhibition
no cat. Laing Art Gallery 2004-10-02 - 2005-01-16


Author(s) Date(s) Publisher Pages
City of Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery: Catalogue of the Permanent Collection of Drawings
A E Whitley 1939 Bemrose & Sons Ltd, Derby p. 90
Visions of Love and Life
Stephen Wildman 1995 Art Services International p. 304; fig. 95
Hidden Burne-Jones, Works on paper by Edward Burne-Jones from Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery
2007 Dan Giles, Ltd., London p. 78

Associated people

Name Type
Ovid Author
William Morris Author

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