William Holman Hunt (1827 - 1910):
The Festival of St Swithin (The Dovecot)
A269; oil on canvas; 73 x 91 cm.
Signed with monogram and dated: Whh 66-75.
Prov: John Heugh of Holmewood.
Bequeathed by Thomas Combe, 1893; WA1894.5.
The composition was designed by Holman Hunt for his sister Emily to paint. They began work in 1865, but she gave up and Hunt completed it himself in the following year. In his own view, it was the most highly finished picture he had ever painted: he had even bought the pigeons, all different, and the dovecot.
Information derived from the Ashmolean Museum's Complete Illustrated Catalogue of Paintings.
Link to the BBC's Your Paintings page of the Public Catalogue Foundation