Study for 'Diana and Actaeon' by Thomas Gainsborough

This is taken from Ovid's 'Metamorphoses' which describes the hunter Actaeon inadvertently happening upon the goddess Diana bathing with her nymphs.


Black & white chalk with grey & grey-black washes & gouache on buff paper
27.4 x 36.4 cm
Art Fund grant:
Acquired in:
Henry Wemyss

Enraged that a mortal has seen her naked, Diana throws water at Actaeon, transforming him into a stag, which is subsequently devoured by his hunting hounds. This is the earliest of three surviving studies for the work in the Royal Collection.


Sir Richard Wallace; Sir John Murray Scott; Lady sackville; Nigel Nicholson; Marchioness of Angsley; Hon. Rupert Paget; Sothebys.

Venue details

Gainsborough's House 46 Gainsborough Street, Sudbury Suffolk CO10 2EU 01787 372 958

Entry details

Free with National Art Pass (standard entry £6.30)

Mon – Sat, 10am – 5pm, Sun from 11am

Closed Good Friday, 24 Dec – 1 Jan

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