British, 1823 - 1904
The Death of King Arthur
Engraving by A. Bellenger (1884) of 'Arthur in Avalon' by James Archer
The painting, Le Morte d'Arthur, shows King Arthur, "the once and future king", lying in Avalon. He is surrounded by four queens watching over him. The two figures on the shore are believed to be Merlin and Nimue. Arthur is having a vision of the Holy Grail, as embodied by the ethereal angel figure painted at the top right of the picture.
Archer painted several Arthurian paintings during his career including other pictures based on the theme of Arthur in Avalon. Most of these paintings are now lost to us.
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