Inscribed ‘JS.’ in monogram b.r.
Oil on canvas, 31 1/8 × 26 1/8 (79.2 × 66.2)
Presented by Mrs S. Swinton 1976
Prov: ...; bt. at auction in Glasgow c. 1947 by Mr S. Swinton.
The subject is Rosalind, the heroine of Shakespeare's As You Like It, although the episode depicted, of her carving on a tree-trunk, does not occur in the play. It is Orlando who in Act 3 scene 2 says:
‘O Rosalind! these trees shall be my books,
And in their barks my thoughts I'll character,
That every eye which in this forest looks
Shall see thy virtue witness'd everywhere.
Run, run, Orlando; carve on every tree,
The fair, the chaste, and unexpressive she.’
Sant painted at least two other Shakesperian heroines: Viola (‘She never told her love’, exh. BI 1853 (175) and Juliet (sold Christie's 3 May 1920 (111); probably exh. BI 1847 (185) as ‘She hangs upon the cheek of night’).
The Tate Gallery 1976-8: Illustrated Catalogue of Acquisitions, London 1979