Ophelia was such a popular subject that I have given these paintings a separate page. The pictures are listed chronologically rather than alphabetically by artist; a chronological arrangement reveals how the perception of Ophelia's character changed, how a pictorial tradition was established, and how speculative aspects of her character--in particular her sexuality--were suggested.

The most popular subjects by far were Ophelia's madness and the events surrounding her death. Artists could free their imaginations with her death because it is a scene that we do not actually see; it is described to us by Gertrude in Act IV, Scene vii.