Inscribed by the artist in graphite, on reverse, "Jerusalem from the House of Herod".
Dadd, an accomplished draftsman and painter, excelled at rendering exotic and often supernatural subjects in a refined miniaturist technique. His early career was successful and promising, and in 1839 he began to exhibit historic and literary subjects. In 1842 Dadd accompanied Sir Thomas Philipps (1801-1867), former mayor of Newport, South Wales, on a trip to the Holy Land. This exceptional view of Jerusalem from the northeast was undoubtedly begun during this journey, as the carefully rendering of the evening light's reflection and the delicate nature of the fleeting atmospheric effects attest. A graphite drawing of this view exists in Dadd's sketchbook preserved at the Victoria and Albert Museum (now dismantled into separate sheets, inv. D91 to 281), although it does not bear any notes on the color or lighting effects so brilliantly employed in this work. This drawing shows major monuments of Jerusale--the Dome of the Rock and the El-Aqsa mosque at left--from the vantage point of the “House of Herod”, a notation that Dadd included on the back of the sheet which refers to a site mistakenly thought to be Herod's Palace located in the hills above the Via Dolorosa.
Clayton-Payne, Andrew, former owner.