The Cottage Garden
Myles Birket Foster was the fifth son of Myles Birket Foster and his wife, Ann, both from wealthy Quaker families. His early childhood was spent in London, and he was educated first at a Quaker boarding school in Tottenham, Middlesex, and in about 1835 - 1840 at Isaac Brown’s Academy, Hitchin, Hertfordshire. There his natural talent as a landscape painter was encouraged. A letter from Vicars Brothers concerning this work (dated 28th March 1935) reads: "This was quite a good drawing but it appears to have been touched up in the shadows by someone else; this is particularly noticeable on the trees. The lower part of the old woman's face has turned black, but this could easily be cleared away by a clever watercolour artist."