The present drawing relates to Leighton's design for And the sea gave up the dead which were in it, one of eight mosaic roundels of subjects from the Apocalypse which were commissioned from the artist and Edward Poynter to complete Alfred Stevens's earlier scheme for the decoration of the dome of St Paul's Cathedral. The finished design was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1882, but despite favourable reviews was rejected by the Dean of the Cathedral on account of the supposed unchristian treatment of the subject; the scheme was abandoned in 1885. Leighton believed this to be his best design to date, claiming that it was 'a work I should wish to be remembered by in our National Gallery'. He utilised the theme in 1891 when he was commissioned by Henry Tate to produce a work for his forthcoming Gallery of British Art (the Tate Gallery). The drawing depicts the resurrection of the souls on Judgement day, and is taken from the Revelations, ch. XX, v. 13.