Saints Dorothea and Theophilus Window Character Biographies

 

Who was the model for Dorothea - Jane Morris (left) or Maria Zambaco (right)?

Jane Morris 1870St Dorethea detailMaria Zambaco

 

The heads of the three window

The suggestion by Suzanne Fagence Cooper that the model for Dorothea was Maria Zambaco was, in her opinion, reinforced by the date the window was installed - 1872. For the story behind the window's installation click here. This was the period soon after the dramatic climax of the affair and Maria had unexpectedly returned to live in Paris in 1872. In fact, all three faces in the Dorothea and Theophilus window bear some similarity to Maria.

Others have likened Maria Zambaco’s face to stained glass designed by Burne-Jones. P. Neil Ralley, writing in April 7, 2002 on http://www.stainedglassphotography.com/BURNE_JONES_and_%20ZAMBACO.htm states that the similarities between the face and hands of Maria as portrayed in the Burne-Jones’ 1870 painting of her and the figure of St. Luke in Lanercost Priory (1877) are enough to consider Maria as the source for Burne-Jones design.

St Luke