'When Evening Twilight Gathers Round'
Oil on canvas; monogrammed and dated 1877.
15.75 x 24 inches
Royal Academy, 1877 no. 806
Moonrise Over Europe, Barber Institute, University of Birmingham, 2006
'With a breadth of mellowness that calls to mind the works of the famous old water-colour painter Varley Mr WWJ Boot illustrates the line "When Evening Twilight Gathers Round";London Evening Standard, 14 June 1877
Boot was evidently influenced by the Pether family of painters of moonlit scenes, like Atkinson Grimshaw. He was fascinated by trees and wrote a book, Trees and How to Paint Them in 1883: The setting of this moody, mellow picture, which was exhibited in the Royal Academy in 1877 (no 806) is Kirkstall Abbey in the artist's native Yorkshire. The quotation of the title is from a popular part-song composed in the 1850s by John Liptrot Hatton:
When ev'ning's twilight gathers round;
When ev'ry flow'r is hush'd to rest;
When autumn leaves breathe not a sound,
And ev'ry bird flies to its nest;
When dewdrops kiss the blushing rose,
When stars are glitt'ring from above!
Then I think of thee, my love,I think of thee, my love,
Then O then I think of thee.