One of several versions of this subject, this painting was unfinished at the time of Rossetti's death and the background was completed by Ford Madox Brown. The painting is a personal expression of Rossetti's love for his deceased wife, Elizabeth Siddal, seen through the writings of Dante (the subject is taken from 'La Vita Nuova'). In this version, the poppies are red, perhaps an explicit reference to opium-derived laudanum. Another version of the painting is in the Tate collection. There are also numerous related pencil studies in the Birmingham collection, as well as a large ornamental maijolica dish painted with a scene of Rossetti's 'Dante's Dream'.