This painting by Dante Gabriel Rossetti is titled Dante’s Dream on the Day of the Death of Beatrice. It’s the most important painting by this artist in Scotland, and is one of The McManus’ star objects. The painting was completed in 1880. Dante Gabriel Rossetti was a founder-member of the Pre-Raphelite Brotherhood. The artist identified strongly with his namesake, the famous Italian poet from the late middle ages, Dante Alighieri. The subject of the painting is drawn from Dante’s autobiography of his early life, Vita Nuova. It depicts his dream on the day of the death of his lover - Beatrice. The red winged figure of Love leads Dante by the hand, as he walks in a state somewhere between consciousness and sleep. Love bends over Beatrice, with the farewell kiss Dante was not able to give her. In his hand, Love holds his arrow, pointed at Dante’s heart. Along with the arrow, you can see a branch of apple blossom, which may represent love consummated in death…a blossom plucked before the coming of the fruit. On the floor, the chamber of dreams is covered with poppies, which are a symbol of restful sleep, and peace in death. The model for Beatrice was Jane Morris, the wife of William Morris - the noted Victorian artist, designer and writer.

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The McManus: Dundee's Art Gallery and Museum

The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery and Museum is situated in the centre of Dundee. The Museum and Art Gallery originally known as the Albert Institute was opened in 1867 as a memorial to Prince Albert. In 2005 The McManus closed for a major refurbishment, reopening again on the 28th February 2010. We celebrated our 150th Anniversay in 2017 with a year of celebration. In 2020 we were awarded Visitor Attraction of the Year by Visit Scotland. The McManus has 8 galleries, which are laid out on 2 floors. Visitors can embark on a journey through 400 million years, and witness how a small settlement developed into the City of Dundee as it is today. From exhibits relating to the life of early man in the area, stunning paintings and decorative art through to artefacts from industries past and present, the City's collections, many of which are recognised as being of national significance, give an insight into Dundee and its people.


  • The McManus: Dundee's Art Gallery and Museum
  • Dundee United Kingdom
  • www.mcmanus.co.uk