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  • Place of origin:

    UK (made)

  • Date:

    1837 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    A.W. Pugin, born 1812 - died 1852 (designer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Pencil, in original mount

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level E, case MD, shelf 27

The design for the Virgin and Child is based on the woodcut that Dürer made in 1511 as the frontispiece to his series The Life of the Virgin. On the basis of the watermark, the stylistic similarities and the pro-Catholic message this drawing is associated with those made to illustrate The Church of Our Fathers.

In 1838 the Laity's Directory advertised 'The Church of Our Fathers…by Daniel Rock DD, with numerous illustrations…etched by A. Welby Pugin' as a forthcoming publication. On 30 October 1837, Pugin noted in his diary 'Began Dr Rock work', therefore it is likely that these designs were intended for The Church of Our Fathers. Dr Rock took longer to write the text and the volume was finally published from 1849-1853, without Pugin's illustrations.

Augustus Welby Northmore Pugin (1812-52) is widely considered as one of the most significant and influential architects, designers and theorists of the 19th century. Following his conversion to Catholicism in 1835, he identified the Gothic style with Christian architecture and his work and writings inspired and framed the Gothic Revival. In 'Contrasts', published in 1836, he condemned classical forms and ardently praised 14th and 15th-century architecture. Pugin is best remembered for his work on the Palace of Westminster.

Physical description

Illustration of an allegory of the rosary. In the centre, on a crescent moon, sits the Virgin Mary and Child. Around her are the beads of the rosary divided by seven sorrowful roundels illustrating the seven joyful and the seven sorrowful mysteries of Our Lady. From the rosary hangs a crucifix, around which is a scroll bearing the words of the Ave Maria. Several figures kneel in prayer under the rosary.

Place of Origin

UK (made)


1837 (made)


A.W. Pugin, born 1812 - died 1852 (designer)

Materials and Techniques

Pencil, in original mount


Height: 250 mm, Width: 300 mm

Descriptive line

Sketchbook; allegory of the rosary, A.W.N. Pugin, 1837.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Alexandra Wedgwood, A.W.N. Pugin and the Pugin Family , London; V&A, 1985, pp. 167-171





Subjects depicted

Allegory; Rosary; Crescent moon; Scroll


Designs; Drawings; Interiors


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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