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Watercolour - A Saint of the Eastern Church (formerly called A Greek Acolyte)

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Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery

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Basic Information

Accession Number:1900P1
Collection:Fine Art Prints and Drawings
Date:1867 - 1868

Maker Information

Artist:Simeon Solomon - View biography for Simeon Solomon


Solomon was fascinated by the practice of faith, and by the aesthetic qualities of religious ritual. He made many works on the subject of Jewish religious practice but was also interested in Christian ritual, depicting Catholic subjects and, in this case, an idealised young acolyte in the Greek Orthodox Church. The young man carries a sprig of myrtle (which in Solomon's work is often associated with love) and a censer of burning incense, and his head is surrounded with a circle of light, like a halo.

In 'Love Revealed: Simeon Solomon and the Pre-Raphaelites' Colin Cruise suggests that 'A Saint of the Eastern Church' may have inspired the composition and mood of Kate Bunce's oil painting, 'Melody' ('Musica') (c. 1895), because the two works have several features in common and her father, John Thackray Bunce, owned the Solomon watercolour.

Presented by Kate and Myra Bunce, 1900.

Further Information

Production Period:19th century
Medium:Watercolour over pencil with gum, on paper.

Associated People


Height:452 mm
Width:328 mm

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