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Dante Gabriel Rossetti Art Prints and Posters
Painter, designer and poet, Gabriel Charles Dante Rossetti was born in London, the son of a semi-Italian mum and completely Italian dad who taught at King's College where Gabriel was sent as soon as he was old enough. During the 1840s, Dante, who'd changed the order of his forenames because he wished to mark his affinity with the infernal poet (or just couldn't remember which came first) went to the Royal Academy, befriended Holman Hunt and Millais, and formed the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.
In 1850 he met Lizzie Siddal and got engaged to her but then made her wait 10 years before marrying her. But she was used to being kept hanging around by artists, having spent four months in a bath waiting for his pal Millais to turn her into Ophelia. Lizzie died of a laudanum overdose just twenty months after they married, devastating Dante who moved to Chelsea where he shared a house with fellow poet Algernon 'Lash' Swinburne and got a mistress, stroke housekeeper. He stroked her a lot but didn't paint because she was a big blondie and not a bit Pre-Raphael Lite like Jane Morris, whom he did paint, and was also said to have penetrated, but with hubby William's permission.
During the 1870s, in addiction to guzzling scotch and chloral (Victorian toilet cleaner), Dante was still feeling upset about Lizzie, saw his poetry take a critical panning and suffered insomnia. Consequently he went to pieces and attempted suicide, but failed just as his kidneys would a decade later, completing the job for him.Copyright Michael Cox