This work is a good example of the fairy painting genre that was popular in the Victorian era. This work in particular is extra interesting because it was created by Dadd while he was institutionalized at a psychiatric hospital. He was committed there for killing his father, as he thought the man was the devil. This has led some art historians to point to the detailed nature of the painting as symptomatic of Dadd’s schizophrenia. It is also probably why it took him almost a decade to paint.
The Fairy Feller’s Master-Stroke, 1855-64