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Burne-Jones designed this scene and no.66 for a window in All Hallows Church, Allerton. With two other Biblical subjects, they act as predellas (small panels below the main picture) to the larger representation of four female figures: Miriam, Ruth, Esther and the Virgin Mary. Each scene is related to the figure above it. In this cartoon, the widow Ruth is depicted at the moment when her gleaning in the fields is interrupted by the rich landowner Boaz. He has observed her dutiful attendance on her mother-in-law, and later rewards her modesty and virtue with an offer of marriage.

August 2004