Fridge magnet featuring Una and the Lion by William Bell Scott, from the National Galleries of Scotland Collection.
Scott’s painting was inspired by Edmund Spenser’s sixteenth-century poem The Faerie Queen. In the poem, Una is the beautiful young daughter of a king and queen who have been imprisoned by a ferocious dragon.
Una undertakes a quest to free her parents, but on her journey she encounters a fierce lion. The lion is so captivated by Una’s innocence and beauty that he abandons his plan to eat her, and vows instead to become her protector and companion.
Scott shows Una gently resting her fingers in the lion’s terrific mane, as they make their way through the autumnal wood together.
William Bell Scott (12 September 1811 – 22 November 1890) was a Scottish artist in oils and watercolour and sometimes printmaking. He was also a poet and art teacher.