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Beerbohm caricatured people and events associated with the charismatic Rossetti in a series of watercolours called 'Rossetti and his Friends'. This watercolour recalls the summer of 1857, when Rossetti led a troupe of young artists, including Morris and Burne-Jones, to Oxford. There they painted the walls of the newly-completed Union building with scenes from Sir Thomas Malory's Morte d'Arthur. Beerbohm shows Rossetti at work on Sir Launcelot's Vision of the Sanc Grael, for which Burne-Jones posed as Sir Launcelot. Also shown is Benjamin Jowett, an Oxford professor of classics famous for his pithy remarks.

August 2004