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  • Place of origin:

    London (made)

  • Date:

    1864-1870 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Burne-Jones, Edward Coley (Sir), born 1833 - died 1898 (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Pencil and red chalk on wove paper, in a volume quarter-bound in green leather, gold tooled, and canvas boards

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Dr W. L. Hildburgh FSA

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    British Galleries, Room 122, case 1

Object Type
Artists have, for centuries, developed their drawing skills by sketching from antique sculpture. Edward Burne-Jones (1833-1898) made numerous sketches of classical and Italian Renaissance sculpture in this sketchbook. Five sketches depict sculptures in the British Museum and four have been identified as showing objects from the South Kensington Museum.

Burne-Jones moved near this Museum at the end of 1864. He moved first to 41 Kensington Square and three years later to The Grange, North End Lane, Fulham where he lived until his death in 1898. The South Kensington Museum, where many sketches were made, is mentioned several times in the 'Memorials of Burne-Jones' (1904). He wrote about liking this Museum more than the British Museum and wrote about this Museum's tapestries and cast courts. Such references suggest that he was familiar with several aspects of the collections.

Materials & Making
Some of the sketches are in softer pencil than the last drawings in this sketchbook, drawn in hard pencil,. The sketch book is made of paper with unvaried thickness, known as wove paper, which has a roughly textured surface on which soft pencil works particularly well.

Physical description

Sketch book of 46 pages, containing studies of works of art including a bronze and part of a frieze and a metope in the British Museum, two sculptures by or after Pierino da Vinci, and part of a fresco by Andrea Mantegna

Place of Origin

London (made)


1864-1870 (made)


Burne-Jones, Edward Coley (Sir), born 1833 - died 1898 (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Pencil and red chalk on wove paper, in a volume quarter-bound in green leather, gold tooled, and canvas boards


Height: 18.2 cm, Width: 26.4 cm, Depth: 1.4 cm

Object history note

Drawn in London by Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones (born in Birmingham, 1833, died in London, 1898)

Descriptive line

Burne-Jones, E.C. Sketchbook (46 pages)

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

Lambert, Susan (ed.) Pattern & Design: Designs for the Decorative Arts 1480-1980 London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 1983

Labels and date

British Galleries:

From about 1860 the Museum was actively collecting and displaying European Medieval and Renaissance decorative arts and sculpture. This small figure group was bought in 1863 for the South Kensington Museum and thought at the time to have been made in about 1550. In the 1860s the artist Edward Burne-Jones studied works of art in museum collections to improve his drawing skills. This is his sketch of the terracotta group, made on one of his visits to the Museum. [27/03/2003]




Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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