Nation votes for Burton's masterpiece
AN amorous final encounter between star-crossed lovers in the turret of a castle has captured the hearts of the public.
The last tender moments caught by Clare-born painter Frederic William Burton in his masterpiece 'Hellelil and Hildebrand -- The Meeting on the Turret Stairs' is the country's best-loved work of art.
The painting captured 22pc of the votes in RTE's 'Masterpiece' campaign.
Anne Hodge, a curator at the National Gallery, said the work has proved incredibly popular since it first exhibited in London in 1864. It was bequeathed to the National Gallery in 1900 by Margaret McNair Stokes, a sister of Whitley Stokes.
The hours the painting is on view will be extended this weekend to between 10am to 5pm today and Saturday, while it will be on show between midday and 5pm on Sunday.