The Missal (1902). John William Waterhouse (1849–1917). Oil on canvas.
A missal is a liturgical book containing all instructions and texts necessary for the celebration of Mass throughout the year.
Waterhouse was an English Pre-Raphaelite painter, exhibited at the Society of British Artists from 1872 and at the Royal Academy from 1874. Often painted scenes from ancient history or classical genre subjects, similar to the work of Lawrence Alma-Tadema. Waterhouse consistently painted on a larger scale. His brushwork is bolder, his sunlight casts harsher shadows and his history paintings are more dramatic.