Undine 1872

Title:  Undine
Date:  1872
Medium:  oil on canvas

The romantic fascination with supernatural characters was an inspiration for the creation of Undine by John William Waterhouse in 1872. It was not uncommon for writers of that time to create stories about such characters. But this story of the undead was unlike any other. It had many supernatural features that would appeal to readers. Waterhouse depicted Undine as a witch who was able to control her own destiny. The twisted fate of this witch will leave you wondering what lies in store for you.


The undine painting by John William Waterhouse was created in the Romanticism style. This style was rooted in Dickens's belief that fairy tales should be kept as part of human culture, even in our utilitarian age. Waterhouse also shared the Romantics' interest in spirituality and the supernatural. In this painting, a young woman stands in front of an undulating well, surrounded by water.

The painting was so well-received that it was accepted for the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition in 1876. It was given the favourable hanging position known as the “on the line” by the hanging committee. Waterhouse's painting was clearly influenced by the work of Lawrence Alma-Tadema, a French painter who also painted a voluptuous nude bacchante.

Waterhouse's most famous painting

If you have a love of art, you may be interested in buying a reproduction of John William Waterhouse's most famous painting: Undine 1872. Waterhouse was known for his Romanticism paintings, which often feature supernatural characters or scenes that have a spiritual significance. Undine was Waterhouse's first painting with a young female figure. Her long hair mimics a flume of water and her expression is reminiscent of a waterfall. Waterhouse's use of water as a theme is a common theme in his works, and he painted many young female figures in this style.

While Waterhouse was not a Pre-Raphaelite, he drew inspiration from the work of the masters of the movement, and his work is often grouped with that group. Undine was his first known work, and was completed in 1872. While the painting has Classical elements, it is melodramatic and romantic in appearance. Although Waterhouse was a young artist, he managed to capture the mood of the Romantic age by combining classic subject matter with folklore.