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Identification and Creation

Object Number
Edward Burne-Jones, British (Birmingham, England 1833 - 1898 London, England)
The Days of Creation: The Second Day
Work Type
Persistent Link

Physical Descriptions

Watercolor, gouache, shell gold, and platinum paint on linen-covered panel prepared with zinc white ground
101.9 x 35.6 cm (40 1/8 x 14 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • inscription: back of panel, below area formerly covered by label, graphite: No V
  • inscription: back of panel, black ink (or paint?): This picture is not complete by / itself, but is No 2 of a series of / six water colour pictures represent /-ing the Days of Creation which / are placed in a frame designed / by the Painter, from which he / desires they may not be removed.
  • inscription: back of frame, lower center, graphite: 2


Recorded Ownership History
Purchased from the artist by William Graham, London, 1877 (£2,000); his sale, Christie's, London, April 2-4, 1886, no. 161 (£1,732 10s.); purchased at that sale by Thomas Agnew and Sons, London; purchased from them by Alexander Henderson, later first Lord Faringdon, 1886; his sale, Sotheby's, London, June 13, 1934, no. 99 (£860); acquired at that sale through Martin Birnbaum by Grenville L. Winthrop; his bequest to the Fogg Art Museum, 1943.

Acquisition and Rights

Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Bequest of Grenville L. Winthrop
Accession Year
Object Number
European and American Art


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Publication History

  • Oscar Wilde, "The Grosvenor Gallery", Dublin University Magazine (July 1877), pp. 15-16
  • Frederic George Stephens, "Edward Burne-Jones, A.R.A., II", Portfolio (1885), 16, pp. 229-30
  • "The Graham Collection", The Times [London] (April 5, 1886), p. 12
  • Malcolm Bell, Edward Burne-Jones: A Record and Review, George Bell and Sons, Ltd. (London, England, 1892), pp. 49-51, repr.
  • Julia Cartwright, "The Life and Work of Sir Edward Burne-Jones" (London, England, 1894), pg. 19
  • Malcolm Bell, Sir Edward Burne-Jones: A Record and Review, Bell (London and New York, 1894), pp. 49-51, 102
  • "Art. II. Catalogue of the New Gallery. Exhibition of the Works of Edward Burne-Jones.", The Edinburgh Review (January 1899), CLXXXIX, p. 29
  • Sir Wyck Bayliss, Five Great Painters of the Victorian Era (London, England, 1902), pp. 79-81, frontispiece
  • W. Graham Robertson, Time Was: The Reminiscences of W. Graham Robertson, Hamish Hamilton (London, 1931)
  • Paintings and Drawings of the Pre-Raphaelites and their Circle, exh. cat., Fogg Art Museum (Cambridge, MA, 1946), no. 25
  • Henry James, The Painter's Eye, Rupert Hart-Davis (London, 1956 (1877)), pp. 145-46
  • Agnes Mongan, "The Fogg Art Museum's Collection of Drawings", Harvard Library Bulletin, Harvard University (Cambridge, 1958), vol. 3, no. 2, March, pp. 5-9, p. 203
  • Martin Birnbaum, The Last Romantic (New York, NY, 1960), pp. 204-5
  • A. Charles Sewter, The Stained Glass of William Morris and His Circle, Yale University Press (U.S.) (New Haven, CT and London, England, 1974-1975), vol. 1, p. 58, vol. 2, p. 147
  • John Christian, Burne-Jones: The Paintings, Graphic and Decorative Work of Sir Edward Burne-Jones, exh. cat., Arts Council of Great Britain, London (London, England, 1975), under no. 259
  • Marjorie B. Cohn, Wash and Gouache: A Study of the Development of the Materials of Watercolor, exh. cat., Fogg Art Museum (Cambridge, 1977), pp. 14, 21, 32, 56, cat. 9 p. 91, repr. p. 92 as pl. 2
  • Christopher Wood, Olympian Dreamers: Victorian Classical Painters 1860-1914, Constable (London, England, 1983), pp. 181, 184
  • Maria Teresa Benedetti, ed., Burne-Jones: dal preraffaellismo al simbolismo, exh. cat., Mazzotta (Milan, Italy, 1986), p. 89, under cat. no. 57
  • Martin Harrison and Bill Waters, Burne-Jones, Barrie & Jenkins (London, 1989), pp. 110-13
  • A.S. Byatt, Angels and Insects, Chatto & Windus (London, England, 1992), repr. p. 253
  • Burne-Jones 1833-1898: Dessins du Fitzwilliam Museum de Cambridge, exh. cat., Musée d'arts de Nantes (Nantes, 1992), pp. 27, 110
  • Rebecca Johnston, "Days of Creation by Sir Edward Burne Jones: A Study of Materials and Techniques" (thesis (certificate in conservation), Straus Center for Conservation and Technical Studies, July 1992), Unpublished, pp. 1-11 passim
  • Christopher Newall, The Grosvenor Gallery Exhibitions: Change and Continuity in the Victorian Art World, Cambridge University Press (Cambridge, 1995), pp. 16, 57
  • Susan P. Casteras, ed., The Grosvenor Gallery: A Palace of Art in Victorian England, Yale University Press (New Haven, CT and London, England, 1996), pp. 81, 83
  • Laurence des Cars, Stephen Wildman, and John Christian, "Edward Burne-Jones and France", Edward Burne-Jones: Victorian Artist-Dreamer, Metropolitan Museum of Art / Harry N. Abrams, Inc. (New York, 1998), pp. 29-30, 143
  • Christopher Wood, Burne-Jones: The Life and Works of Sir Edward Burne-Jones (1833-1898), Weidenfeld & Nicolson (London, England, 1998), repr. p. 82 (color)
  • Stephen Wildman and John Christian, Edward Burne-Jones: Victorian Artist-Dreamer, exh. cat., Metropolitan Museum of Art / Harry N. Abrams, Inc. (New York, NY, 1998), reproduced in b/w p. 30, fig. 27, and p. 143, fig. 79.
  • Wendy Graham, "Henry James and British Aestheticism", The Henry James Review (1999), 20, no. 3, p. 269
  • Paul Mitchell and Lynn Roberts, "Burne-Jones's Picture Frames", The Burlington Magazine (June 2000), vol. CXLII, no. 1167, pp. 362-370, p. 365
  • Oliver Garnett, "The Letters and Collection of William Graham: Pre-Raphaelite Patron and Pre-Raphaelite Collector", The Sixty-Second Volume of the Walpole Society, The Walpole Society (Leeds, 2000), pp. 145-343, b9 (p. 288), Letters B17, B18, B20, pp. 153, 167,183, 340
  • Chikashi Kitazaki and Mina Oya, ed., Between Reality and Dreams: Nineteenth Century British and French Art from the Winthrop Collection of the Fogg Art Museum, exh. cat., National Museum of Western Art (Ueno, 2002), p. 38, fig. 3, repr. p. 122
  • Stephan Wolohojian, ed., A Private Passion: 19th-Century Paintings and Drawings from the Grenville L. Winthrop Collection, Harvard University, exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art and Yale University Press (U.S.) (New York, 2003), cat. no. 162, repr. (color), pp. 30, 42
  • Stephan Wolohojian, Ingres, Burne-Jones, Whistler, Renoir... La Collection Grenville L. Winthrop, exh. cat., Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon and Réunion des Musées Nationaux (Paris, France, 2003), no. 162, repr.
  • Pre-Raphaelite and Other Masters: The Andrew Lloyd Webber Collection, exh. cat., Royal Academy of Arts (London, 2003), p. 68
  • Robert Dupin, "La Collection Winthrop", Universalia, Encyclopaedia Universalis (Paris, France, 2004), pp. 343-344, p. 344
  • Veronica Franklin Gould, G. F. Watts: The Last Great Victorian, Yale University Press (U.S.) (New Haven and London, 2004), pp. 134-135
  • Elizabeth Prettejohn, Art for Art's Sake: Aestheticism in Victorian Painting, Yale University Press (New Haven and London, 2007), pp. 236, 240, 241, fig. 126
  • John Christian and Elisa Korb, Hidden Burne-Jones: Works on Paper by Edward Burne-Jones from Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery, exh. cat., D. Giles (London, 2007), under nos. 16, 39
  • Victorian and Traditionalist Pictures, auct. cat., Christie's, London (London, June 5, 2008), p. 85, repr. as fig. 6
  • 19th Century Paintings, Drawings & Watercolours, auct. cat., Bonhams, New Bond Street (London, January 23, 2013), pp. 97, 100, repr. p. 100
  • Fiona Mann, "A 'born rebel': Edward Burne-Jones and watercolour painting 1857-80", The Burlington Magazine (October 2014), CLVI, no. 1339, pp. 657-664, pp. 660, 662-664
  • Colette Crossman, "Seeing the Sacred: Burne-Jones's Reception as a 'Great Religious Painter'", Nineteenth-Century Art Worldwide ([e-journal], Summer 2015), 14, issue 2, figs. 1, 5
  • William Waters and Alastair Carew-Cox, Damozels and Deities: Edward Burne-Jones, Henry Holiday and Pre-Raphaelite Stained Glass 1870-1898, Seraphim Press Ltd (Abbots Morton, Worcestershire, UK, 2017), p. 55, repr. p. 79 as fig. 83
  • Melissa Buron, Truth & Beauty: The Pre-Raphaelites and the Old Masters, exh. cat., Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco (San Francisco, 2018), p. 176, fig. 62
  • Fiona Mann, "'Opaque with a vengeance:' Burne-Jones's Later Watercolours, 1880-98", The Burlington Magazine (February 2019), 161, no. 1391, pp. 128-139, p. 134
  • Christiana Payne, Pre-Raphaelites: Drawings & Watercolours, exh. cat., Ashmolean Museum (Oxford, 2021), p. 45
  • Andrea Wolk Rager, The Radical Vision of Edward Burne-Jones, Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art and Yale University Press (New Haven, 2022), pp. 197-199, repr. as fig. 128 on p. 199

Exhibition History

  • Unidentified Exhibition, Grosvenor Gallery, 1877, Grosvenor Gallery, London, 05/01/1877 - 05/31/1877
  • Unidentified Exhibition, Royal Birmingham Society of Artists, 1885, Royal Birmingham Society of Artists, Birmingham, 01/01/1885 - 12/31/1885
  • Exhibition of the Works of Edward Burne-Jones, New Gallery, London, 01/01/1892 - 12/31/1893
  • Winter Exhibition of the Works of Sir Edward Burne-Jones, New Gallery, London
  • Exhibition of the Works of Sir Edward Burne-Jones, New Gallery, London, 12/31/1898 - 04/08/1899
  • Paintings and Drawings of the Pre-Raphaelites and their Circle, Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, 04/08/1946 - 06/01/1946
  • Pre-Raphaelite and Early French Symbolist Art in the Fogg Collections, Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, 01/16/1973 - 02/25/1973
  • Wash and Gouache: A Study of the Development of the Materials of Watercolor, Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, 05/12/1977 - 06/22/1977
  • A Private Passion: 19th-Century Paintings and Drawings from the Grenville L. Winthrop Collection, Harvard University, Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon, Lyon, 03/15/2003 - 05/26/2003; National Gallery, London, 06/25/2003 - 09/14/2003; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 10/23/2003 - 01/25/2004
  • 32Q: 2130 19th Century, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 11/16/2014 - 04/07/2015

Related Works

Verification Level

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