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Pencil Drawing - Wheel of Fortune - Studies of Hands and Feet for Slave

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Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery

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Basic Information

Accession Number:1927P449
Collection:Fine Art Prints and Drawings
Date:1875 - 1883

Maker Information

Artist:Sir Edward Burne-Jones - View biography for Sir Edward Burne-Jones


A study for the dying king's hands, arms and feet for 'Wheel of Fortune'. Originally appearing as the first predella on the unfinished Troy Triptych. Finally realised as a large independent oil on canvas (1875-83, Musee d'Orsay, Paris).

There are several versions of this subject, beginning in 1870, but it seems this drawing was intended for the 1875 version, now in the Musee d'Orsay. This drawing echoes the work of Michelangelo, particularly the 'Captives' in the Accademia, Florence, which Burne-Jones recorded in his sketchbook from his Italian journey in 1871, and the 'Dying Slave' in the Louvre, of which he owned a small plaster copy (can be seen in photos of his daughter Margaret's bedroom at the Grange).

Bequeathed by James Richardson Holliday, 1927.

Further Information

Production Period:19th century
Medium:Pencil on cream-toned paper.


Height:262 mm
Width:158 mm