Scene from Byron's "Manfred" Artist: Thomas Cole (American, born England, 1801–1848)


American Paintings and Sculpture

Not on view

Landscape plays an integral role in this dramatic scene from Lord Byron’s "Manfred," written around 1816. In the poem, Manfred stands at the edge of a spectacular waterfall, summoning "the Spirit of the place," in the form of a beautiful Witch of the Alps. Although Thomas Cole omits the figure of Manfred, the ethereal female figure rises from the water’s spray beneath a rainbow, personifying the loveliness of nature. Cole described paintings like this one as "a higher style of landscape," works that meld idealized views with literary and historic content.


Oil on canvas


50 × 38 in. (127 × 96.5 cm)

Credit Line

John Hill Morgan, B.A. 1893, LL.B. 1896, M.A. (Hon.) 1929, Fund

Accession Number



19th century


Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of records is ongoing.



Josephine C. Gager, purchased by Yale University Art Gallery
Object copyright
Additional information

Object/Work type

landscapes (representations)


Signed l.l. "1833/ T.Cole"

Technical metadata and APIs


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