skip to content skip to navigation skip to search

Art and Antiques

  « back


Cupid and Psyche - Sketch for 'Cupid delivering Psyche'

Cupid and Psyche - Sketch for 'Cupid delivering Psyche', 1865

105mm x 159mm
Bequest of J R Holliday, 1927.

Accession Number:



Study for Psyche, kneeling at left, embraced by Cupid on right, on the shores of the Styx. The opened casket is on the far left, next to Psyche.



A E Whitley. Catalogue of Drawings. Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery: 1939. p. 87.
Stephen Wildman. Visions of Love & Life . Art Services International: 1995. p. 285; fig. 86.
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. 66, B152.

Research Information:

This is one of 86 studies for illustrations to 'The Story of Cupid and Psyche' made to accompany the poem in William Morris' 'The Earthly Paradise'. This drawing is the first preliminary sketch for 'Cupid Delivering Psyche', a composition that Burne-Jones repeated three times in finished paintings. The first, in 1867, was executed in gouache (on loan to Leighton House Museum, Collection of London Borough of Hammersmith); the second, also in 1867 in watercolour and bodycolour (now in the Cecil Higgins Art Gallery, Bedford); and the third in 1872, in oil on canvas (now in the Sheffield Galleries and Museum Trust).