This painting was the last major work that Burne-Jones completed. It was dedicated to his close friend, the poet Algernon Swinburne. The idea of the God of Love guiding a Pilgrim on his quest comes from The Romaunt of the Rose by the medieval poet Geoffrey Chaucer, a book that Burne-Jones had read while a student at Oxford and which influenced many of the works he produced in collaboration with William Morris. Love is presented both as a Christian angel and as Cupid, the classical god of love.
Gallery label, November 2016
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