Funeral of a Viking, Sir Frank Bernard Dicksee

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The Funeral of a Viking 1893 Sir Frank Bernard Dicksee 1853 - 1928 A Viking killed in battle is laid out in his boat which has been ceremonially set ablaze and is being pushed out to sea with the tide. Fire and water will combine to release the spirit, allowing the heroic warrior to enter Valhalla, the god Odin's glorious Hall of the Slain. The vantage point that Dicksee has selected invites the viewer to feel they are part of the crowd gathered in the gloom for this ancient ceremony. Viking subjects were unusual in Victorian art although Norsk mythology was becoming popular. Dicksee may have been inspired by a funeral scene in the Anglo Saxon poem Beowulf or perhaps by the discovery of a Viking ship burial which was excavated in 1893, in Gokstad, Norway. The shortage of genuine Viking material available meant that Dicksee had to draw on his imagination, painting an artistic mix of Viking shields, Roman body armour and Celtic horned helmets.

Giclee print on premium silk 240gsm paper
Paper size 560x800mm