For, when with beauty we can virtue join, we paint the semblance of a form divine. (Maurice Maeterlinck )
John William Waterhouse (6 April 1849 — 10 February 1917) was an English Pre-Raphaelite painter most famous for his paintings of female characters from mythology and literature. He belonged to the later phase of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.
He was born in Rome to the painters William and Isabela Waterhouse, but when he was five the family moved to South Kensington, near the newly founded Victoria and Albert Museum. He studied painting under his father before entering the Royal Academy schools in 1870. His early works were of classical themes in the spirit of Alma-Tadema and Frederic Leighton, and were exhibited at the Royal Academy, the Society of British Artists and the Dudley Gallery.