Oil on canvas, size approximately 53 x 68 inches, National Gallery of Scotland, Edinburgh.
Dyce's painting was, according to the critics, a failure, and I think they were right. The artist's technique is excellent in its attention to the detail of the clothing and the landscape, but Shakespeare's description in Act III, Scene ii, of the most violent storm in the memory of the characters in the play is lost. Lear at this point is practically mad and his Fool begs him to seek shelter from the storm. Lear says of--really, to--the storm,
Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks! rage! blow!
Lear's Fool, recognizing the violence of the storm, urges Lear to go into the hovel on the heath:
O nuncle, court holy-water in a dry
Dyce fails to convey any of the violent weather these passages suggest.
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