Object Image

Lear and Cordelia

This is one of three paintings by Ford Madox Brown illustrating Shakespeare's play King Lear. This scene shows Lear with his youngest daughter, Cordelia, on the right. Lear's doctor orders the musicians to play more loudly and awaken him. But Cordelia is anxious that her ailing father should sleep and she speaks the lament inscribed on the painting's frame. In the play Lear divides his kingdom between his other two daughters and their husbands. But, after a painful period of self-discovery, he realises that Cordelia is his only true loving child.

Detailed Description This is the first of three paintings by Brown that illustrate scenes from Shakespeare's tragedy King Lear. All three picture...

Oil paint on canvas
711.0 x 991.0mm
Image and text © Tate Britain, 2022

Where you'll find this

Tate Britain
Permanent collection