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Chaucer's 'Legend of Good Women' - Hypsiphile And Medea

Chaucer's 'Legend of Good Women' - Hypsiphile And Medea, 1864

Sepia ink and wash over pencil on toned paper, laid down.
464mm x 492mm
Imago Hypsip Martyris/ Imago Me Veneficae Martyris/ + purp
Presented by Subscribers, 1903

Accession Number:



Design of two women in medieval garden, on the left Hypsiphile with branch over her right shoulder and on the right Medea, wiith flower touching mouth and vase under arm.


Exhibition History

1980 Fitzwilliam Museum
1986 Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna
1992 Mole Antonelliana
1994 Djanogly Art Gallery, University of Nottingham


A E Whitley. Catalogue of Drawings. Birmingham Museums & Art Gallery: 1939. p. 133.
A C Sewter . The Stained Glass of William Morris and His Circle. Yale University Press, New Haven: 1975. Vol. I: fig. 201; Vol. II: pp. 45, 207.
Richard Myers and Hilary Myers. William Morris Tiles. Richard Dennis, Somerset: 1996. fig. 129.
Elisa Korb with John Christian and Tessa Sidey. Hidden Burne-Jones, Works on paper by Edward Burne-Jones from Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery. Dan Giles, Ltd., London: 2007. p. 64, B61.

Research Information:

This is one of seven drawings at Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery of Chaucer's 'Legend of Good Women', six of which were used in the bay window in the Combination Room of Peterhouse College, Cambridge, 1869. The figure of Medea was based on the 1862 finished watercolour 'Morgan le Fay', now in the collection of the London Public Libraries of Hammersmith and Fulham (on long loan to Leighton House Museum, Kensington).