'Sponsa de Libano' 1891
Edward Burne-Jones (1833 - 1898)
Gouache and tempera on paper, 332.5 x 155.5cm
This scene is based on the biblical 'Song of Solomon'. It shows the North and South winds blowing, as requested by King Solomon, on his bride of Lebanon. Despite this being a rather voluptuous biblical episode, Burne-Jones emphasizes the languorous dream-like and chaste nature of the bride. She is shown surrounded by lilies, symbolic of virginity.
Burne-Jones's figure style is inspired by Botticelli, the Italian Renaissance artist. The flat, decorative and linear treatment is similar to stained glass or tapestry. In fact, an earlier design for a tapestry was the basis of this painting.
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