Not currently on display at the V&A

Text of poem 'Lancelot and Elaine' from 'Illustrations to Tennyson's Idylls of the King and Other Poems', vol. 2

Photograph
1875 (printed)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

In 1874, Julia Margaret Cameron's neighbor, and renowned poet, Alfred Tennyson suggested that Cameron create some illustrations for a new volume of his series of poems on Arthurian legends, "Idylls of the King." In the end, only three images were used, as woodcuts, but the full-size prints were later published in two volumes and were accompanied by excerpts from Tennyson's text and his signature. This is a section of verse from volume two.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Additional TitleIdylls of the King and other Poems, vol. 2 (series title)
Materials and Techniques
Ink on paper
Brief Description
Text of poem 'Lancelot and Elaine' from 'Illustrations to Tennyson's Idylls of the King and Other Poems', vol. 2, 1875 illustrated with photographs by Julia Margaret Cameron
Physical Description
Printed page of poem text in book of poems with photographic illustrations.
Dimensions
  • Book cover height: 44.9cm
  • Book cover width: 39cm
  • Page height: 43cm
  • Page width: 33cm
Marks and Inscriptions
'Lancelot and Elaine ................................and the barge, On to the palace-doorway sliding, paused. ....................................................... While thus they babbled of the King, the King Came girt with knights: then turned the tongueless man. From the half-face to the full eye, and rose And pointed to the damsel, and the doors. So Arthur bad the meek Sir Percivale And pure Sir Galahad to uplift the maid; And reverently they bore her into hall. Then came the fine Gawain and wondered at her, And Lancelot later came and mused at her, And last the Queen herself, and pitied her: But Arthur spied the letter in her hand, Stoopt, took, brake seal, and read it; this was all: "Most noble lord, Sir Lancelot of the Lake, I, sometime called the maid of Astolat, Come, for you left me taking no farewell, Hither, to take my last farewell of you. I loved you, and my love had no return, And therefore my true love has been my death. And therefore to our Lady Guinevere, And to all other ladies, I make moan: Pray for my soul, and yield me burial. Pray for my soul thou too, Sir Lancelot, As thou art a knight peerless: Thus he read; And ever in the reading, lords and dames Wept, looking often from his face who read To hers which lay so silent, and at times, So touched were they, half-thinking that her lips, Who had devised the letter, moved again. A Tennyson'
Object history
Originally part of a bound folio volume containing 11 photographs by Cameron and 11 pages of verse text by Tennyson and 3 other text pages (two photographs are missing, the frontispiece image of Tennyson and the last image, 'The Passing of Arthur'). Volume 2 of two albums of illustrations to Tennyson's 'Idylls of the King and other Poems' published by Henry S. King & Co., 1874-75). Each photograph is mounted on bluish mounts with gilt borders.
Associations
Literary Reference'Illustrations to Tennyson's Idylls of the King, and other poems', vol. 2, by Julia Margaret Cameron. London: Henry S. King & Co., 1875.
Summary
In 1874, Julia Margaret Cameron's neighbor, and renowned poet, Alfred Tennyson suggested that Cameron create some illustrations for a new volume of his series of poems on Arthurian legends, "Idylls of the King." In the end, only three images were used, as woodcuts, but the full-size prints were later published in two volumes and were accompanied by excerpts from Tennyson's text and his signature. This is a section of verse from volume two.
Associated Object
45-1939 (Part)
Collection
Accession Number
45:1-1939

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record createdMay 14, 2014
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