a web museum


Wesley College and Bryce Hall

Henry Holiday, London, England


The design of this window was first created in 1885 for Drew Theological Seminary in Madison, New Jersey, not far from New York City. Holiday was still the leading designer at Powell's Glass Works in London. In 1892 the same Methodists founded Wesley College(at left)and requested another edition of the splendid window from Holiday, who had founded his own glass works in 1891.

Henry Holiday (1839-1927) was an important Pre-Raphaelite artist and a leading maker of stained glass. He was friends with Rossetti, Edward Burne-Jones and William Morris early in his artistic career, and created many superb paintings in the Pre-Raphaelite manner.

In 1861, Holiday accepted the job of stained glass window designer for Powell's Glass Works in London, after Burne-Jones had left to work for Morris & Co. During his time at Powell he made over 300 commissions, mostly for customers in the USA.

In 1891 he left Powell to set up his own glass works in Hampstead, producing stained glass, mosaics, enamels and sacred objects.

The virtue of Humility was added to the three primary virtues, a wise reminder in a university setting.

The halo identifies the woman as Christian, and she helps her apparently brilliant child to rise, suggesting the modesty of a mother with a talented offspring. They might remind us of Mary and her exceptional son Jesus.