A large part of the oeuvre of Manuel Ocaranza, who studied at the San Carlos Academy in the 1860s, consists of Costumbrista or genre scenes, though he was later to paint historical works. The Love of the Humming Bird and The Dead Flower belong to the artist's Costumbrista phase. In The Love of the Humming Bird, a young woman is looking through a window at a bird that is hovering around a lily. She is clutching a letter against her breast and the sheer white dress that she is wearing, set off by a bright red sash, makes her stand out and links her to the white flower. The white lily has been used since the Middle Ages to symbolize purity and often been associated with the Virgin Mary, while the humming bird denotes masculinity. In this work, the latter ranges freely around the former, which represents the virtue of the young woman, who is moved after reading the letter from a probable suitor, so that we can well imagine what the artist is allegorically alluding to. This work was shown at the 1869 XIVth Exhibition of the National Fine Arts School, along with the other work by Ocaranza entitled The Dead Flower, which he never publicly linked to The Love of the Humming Bird, although the critics considered the two pieces to be "two stanzas from the same poem". In the said piece, a young woman with a melancholy expression is looking anxiously skyward, with her arms crossed in token of repentance. In front of her, denoting lost virtue and alluding to the cause of her remorse, is a broken lily. In the background is an expanse of countryside in which the girl probably secludes herself from the bustle of the city. The tragic tale of passion that began with The Love of the Humming Bird concludes in this work, which makes it clear that the love symbolized by the humming bird was false. Although the protagonists in the two paintings look different, it is clear that they are thematically linked. Such moralizing romantic scenes are typical of the late-XIXth century, and Ocaranza was one of the main exponents of this genre. The Love of the Humming Bird was donated by the National Fund for Culture and the Arts in 1994, while The Dead Flower was assigned to the MUNAL in 1984 by the National Center for the Conservation and Registration of Mexico's Artistic Heritage.