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The fairy tale journey may look like an outward trek across plains and mountains, through castles and forests, but the actual movement is inward, into the lands of the soul. ~Terri Windling
Burne-Jones revisited the theme of Briar Rose over half his lifetime. These Briar Rose border tiles based on the series by paintings Edward Burne-Jones. In addition to paintings, Jones also designed a series of nine two-tile Sleeping Beauty panels for a bedroom fireplace at 'The Hill', the home of painter Myles Birket Foster in the early days of Morris, Marshall, and Faulkner.
Unlike the fairy tale tales painted for 'The Hill', the Briar Rose series does not tell a sequential story but shows the sleepers as seen by the prince as he makes his way through the castle to The Rose Bower.
Morris and Co. designs often were created for one medium and then adapted and modified for another. Ten years after the initial fireplace tiles, he began a series of three small but haunting paintings, and then four larger works that he worked onintermittently from 1870 to 1890. The series was displayed with verses by William Morris.
In the original study for The Briar Wood some of the knights appear to be more feminine than masculine. Burne-Jones modelled the knights from women: Jane Morris, Georgiana Burne-Jones (Ned's wife), and Maria Zambaco, the Greek beauty who later became his paramour, an ill-fated tragedy of a chapter in his life, characterized by madness, tears, and even suicide threats.
The fateful slumber floats and flows
About the tangle of the rose.
But lo the fated hand and heart
To rend the slumberous curse apart.
The threat of war, the hope of peace
The Kingdom's peril and increase.
Sleep on, and bide the latter day
When fate shall take her chains away.
The maiden pleasance of the land
Knoweth no stir of voice or hand,
No cup the sleeping waters fill,
The restless shuttle lieth still.
Here lies the hoarded love the key
To all the treasure that shall be.
Come, fated hand, the gift to take
And smite the sleeping world awake.
Title: Edward Burne-Jones Briar Rose Tile Panels
Panels: 8 tiles, in 4 two-tile panels.
Size: 6 inch square tiles (15.4 cm), or 8 inch 20.3 cm)square tiles
Thickness: 3/8 inch (1 cm)
Weight: 11.5 ounces (326 grams) each six-inch tile
One panel (2 tiles) $185
Four panels (set of 8): $700
One panel (2 tiles) $225
Four panels (set of 8): $880
Minimum Order: One panel