Morte Darthur

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Morte Darthur

  1. 1. From Legend to Life: Julia Margaret Cameron’s Illustrations to Malory’s “Morte Darthur” DR. DAVID LUTHER
  2. 2. The Parting of Lancelot and Guinevere <ul><li>Medievalism and Romanticism </li></ul><ul><li>Victorian attitudes towards Guinevere </li></ul><ul><li>Themes: temptation, forgiviness, and redemption </li></ul><ul><li>Rossetti’s Oxford Union Mural of 1857 </li></ul><ul><li>“ Guinevere,” lines 86-91 </li></ul><ul><li>Restraint of gesture—Guinevere’s silent sorrow </li></ul>
  3. 3. William Morris’ Queen Guinevere 1858 <ul><li>Morris’ only extant oil painting </li></ul><ul><li>Tristram and Isolde: the tragic face of courtly love </li></ul><ul><li>Mathew Arnold’s 1852 study, Wagner’s opera, Swinburne’s verse drama, Tennyson’s “Idylls” </li></ul><ul><li>Victorian representations of femininity </li></ul><ul><li>Painting’s medievalism </li></ul><ul><li>Painting’s allusions to love affair with Lancelot </li></ul><ul><li>Irony: parody of the Arthurian love triangle </li></ul>
  4. 4. Queen Guinevere by William Morris 1858
  5. 5. Frank Cowper’s Four Queens Find Lancelot Sleeping
  6. 6. Malroy’s Nimue and Merlin 1874 <ul><li>Vivien as the “femme fatale”: Victorian degenerate woman </li></ul><ul><li>“ The wiliest and the worst,” line 29 </li></ul><ul><li>Based on Malory’s Nimue, whose beauty caught Merlin’s eye </li></ul><ul><li>Tennyson’s telling: Vivien’s pursuit </li></ul><ul><li>Compared to Burne Jones The Beguiling of Merlin </li></ul><ul><li>Vivien as the incarnation of the serpent in Eden: Arthur’s fall </li></ul><ul><li>She “writhed toward him,” line 237 </li></ul><ul><li>Her “arm clung like a snake,” line 240 </li></ul><ul><li>Analogy of snake in Gustave Dore’s engraving to “Idylls” </li></ul>
  7. 7. Nimue and Merlin continued <ul><li>Cameron submerged serpentine sensuality </li></ul><ul><li>Casting of the spell and submission </li></ul><ul><li>Absence of sexual tension </li></ul><ul><li>Victorian decorum restricted models actions </li></ul><ul><li>Length of time required for exposures </li></ul><ul><li>Model selection: W M Rossetti: “truth” and “scrupulous fidelity” </li></ul>
  8. 8. Elenor Brickdale’s Merlin <ul><li>Then, in one moment, she put forth the charm Of woven paces and of waving hands, And in the hollow oak he lay as dead, And lost to life and use and name and fame </li></ul>
  9. 9. The Beguiling of Merlin
  10. 10. Burne Jones’ The Beguiling of Merlin 1874 <ul><li>A storm was coming, but the winds were still And in the wild woods of Broceliande Before an oak, so hollow, huge and old... At Merlin's feet the wily Vivien lay ... lissome-limbed, she </li></ul><ul><li>Writhed towards him, slided up his knee and sat, Behind his ankle twined her hollow feet Together, curved an arm about his neck, Clung like a snake. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Burne-Jones’ Merlin and Nimue 1861
  12. 12. Cameron’s Standing Woman Burne-Jones’ Flamma Vestalis
  13. 13. Elaine 1874 &quot;Then rose the dumb old servitor, and the dead, oar'd by the dumb went upward with the flood&quot;
  14. 14. King Arthur Lying in the Barge
  15. 15. Burne-Jones’ Last Sleep of Arthur in Avalon 1898

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