Here’s the third week in a row with a new print.  This one is based on a book “The Well at the World’s End” by William Morris, an early fantasy novel from 1896. Morris is remembered for his textile and wallpaper designs more than he is for his fantasy novels, but there is some great stuff in his books.  One of my favorite images from “The Well at the World’s End” is the Dry Tree, which is a huge, dead tree festooned with the shields and arms of all those who tried and failed to reach the titular well.

Morris’ books are a little bit of a tough read because the pacing and language are not quite what contemporary fantasy readers are likely accustomed to.  I have made some effort to go back and read some of the earliest fantasy novels, and the work of getting through them is truly rewarding in terms of beautiful, imaginative fantasy.  Morris is great, as are George MacDonald (Phantastes and various shorter fairy tales), Lord Dunsany (The Charwoman’s Shadow, The Sword of Welleran, etc.) and E. R. Edison (The Worm Ouroboros).  Anyone with a love for the fantasy genre should give some time to these older authors and see just where some of the giants of fantasy got their inspiration.



Comments (2)

  1. DeFor wrote::

    I love Dunsany and McDonald, I’ll have to check out Morris.
    Have you read The Gormenghast Novels, by chance?

    Sunday, June 23, 2013 at 8:46 am #
  2. Brett Grunig wrote::

    I have not read any of Gormenghast yet, though it has caught my attention a few times. I’ll have to bump it up a little higher on the list.

    Sunday, June 23, 2013 at 1:11 pm #