Partner Evelyn De Morgan, Anna Maria Wilhelmina Stirling

Queer Places:
Brookwood Cemetery, Glades House, Cemetery Pales, Brookwood, Woking GU24 0BL, UK

Jane Hales (1851-1926) emerged as a favoured muse amongst Pre-Raphaelite artists. She had distinguishable traits, slighter facial features than other models of the time, such as Jane Morris (nee Burden, married William Morris). She also had loose lustrous waves of long hair, seen frequently in Evelyn De Morgan’s paintings. Both Jane Morris and Jane Hales had similar working-class backgrounds. Jane Morris’s father was a stableman, and Jane Hales father was an agricultural labourer. Both Janes were also lifelong friends with the De Morgans, with Jane Hales buried in the same cemetery, Brookwood, just a few feet away from William and Evelyn De Morgan, showing how highly regarded she was.

Evelyn De Morgan's model for Aurora in Aurora Triumphans, 1877-78, was Jane Hales, who was appointed nursemaid in 1866, to care for Evelyn's sister Wilhelmina. De Morgan's repeated images of Hales - often depicted nude - have encouraged some scholars to speculate on the nature of their relationship. De Morgan's married ceramist William De Morgan, but Hales was a much-loved member of the household and was buried next to Evelyn and William.

Born Mary Jane Hales in Leverington, Cambridgeshire, 1851. In 1866 she was hired as a nanny and housekeeper by the family of Percival Andre Pickering, QC. She lived with the Pickering family in Upper Grosvenor Street and later Bryanston Square, London. Evelyn De Morgan was eleven years old and her sister, Wilhelmina Stirling (born Anna Maria Wilhelmina Diana Pickering) was only one in 1866, when Jane Hales, only 15 at the time, became their live-in nursery maid. She left the family briefly from May 1870 to November 1871, possibly due to an illness in her own family. She looked after and became the companion to the Pickering's daughter, Evelyn (later De Morgan, wife of the potter and novelist William De Morgan), often posing for her during her art school studies in London and later in her career. Later, she became the companion to Evelyn's sister Anna Maria Wilhelmina Stirling, continuing to live with her after Wilhelmina's marriage in 1901. She died 1926.

Morgan, Evelyn de - Aurora Triumphans - c. 1886.jpg
Aurora Triumphans (1886) Evelyn de Morgan

Boreas and Oreithyia (1896) Evelyn de Morgan

The Dryad (1884) Evelyn de Morgan

Luna (1885) Evelyn de Morgan

Lux in Tenebris (1895) Evelyn de Morgan

Helen of Troy (1898) Evelyn de Morgan

My published books:

See my published books