The painting depicts the discovery of the sleeping soldiers by a Knight. In their slumber they have become completed entwined by the barbed thorns of the Briar rose.
Running beneath each of the major panels is an inscription of a poem by William Morris, under The Briar Wood the inscription reads:
"The fateful slumber floats and flows
About the tangle of the rose.
But lo the fated hand and heart
To rend the slumberous curse apart."
legend of briar rosepre-raphaelite
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