This is the opening design of Boyle's illustrations for Tennyson's The May Queen. The image typfies her emphasis on domestic spaces, children, rurality, and female experience. The composition is a strong opener, engaging the viewer by showing the mother looking directly at the original reader - and at us. The mother's benign expression gives no clue as the impending tragedy. 3½ x 4 inches. Wood engraving, cut by Horace Harral. [Click on image to enlarge it.]

Scanned image and text by Simon Cooke. You may use this image without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the person who scanned it and (2) link to this URL in a web document or cite it in a print one.


Tennyson, Alfred. The May Queen. London: Sampson Low, 1861.

Created 20 June 2020