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q759.2 I.:S4nd. v./. 

Th<a i^f 13 ?>nd letters of Sir 
John Everett Millais 


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The Life and Letters 


Sir John Everett Millais 


Life and Letters 


Sir John Everett Millais 








Copyright, 1899 






Transition in Art " Rosalind and Celia " " Jephthah " " Sleeping " and 
" Waking " The Paris Exhibition Holman Hunt's " Liberal Whip " - 
Frith and Millais go to Paris Visit to Rosa Bonheur " The Boyhood 
of Raleigh " " The Flood " Millais goes deer-stalking Illness of his 
father His death Sport in the North " The Knight Errant " M illais 
goes to Loch More A cow who eats salmon " Chill October " Death 
of Charles Dickens Millais draws him after death Dr. Anderson 
" Victory, O Lord ! " Dr. Grote The Artists' Benevolent Fund 
16,000 collected at the first dinner " Hearts are Trumps" Portrait 
of Mrs. Bischoffsheim Its reception in Paris and Munich Mrs. Heugh 

Autumn Holidays Death of Sir Edwin Landseer An illustrated 
letter Mr. Thomas Hills Millais on Landseer and his critics He 
finishes Landseer's uncompleted pictures Anecdotes of Landseer . . i 


"The North-West Passage" Captain Trelawny A curious compact 
Prints of Millais' pictures in distant lands "The Fringe of the Moor" 

Letter to Mary Millais "The Deserted Garden" Ruskin disap 
proves Archibald Stuart-Wortley Millais gives him lessons Mr. 
Stuart-Wortley's notes on them Miss Dorothy Tennant Sir William 
Harcourt, Lord James, and Millais at lawn-tennis "Over the Hills and 
Far Away" Lord Lytton John Forster "The Yeoman of the 
Guard 1 ' Invitation from the Queen of Holland "The Sound of Many 
Waters" Painting under difficulties A mad preacher Commission 
to paint H.R.H. the Princess of Wales " Erne Deans " " The Bride 
of Lammermoor " "The Princes in the Tower" Henry Wells, R.A., 

on Millais Illness and death of Millais' second son . . . .48 



The new house Millais' delight in Kensington Gardens He receives, in 
Paris, the Gold " Medaille d'Honneur " Is likewise created an Officier 
du Legion d'Honneur Sir Edgar Boehm's letter on the Paris Exhibition 

Letter from Monsieur Emile Bayard French recognition of British 
Art Notes by Professor Herkomer Mr. Frith, R. A. 7 on Paris artists 
and studios Millais and Frith are painted for Gambart's house Sarah 




Berahardt Invitation from the Queen of Spain Albert Gray's notes 
on Millais' visit to Holland His admiration for Rembrandt and Franz- 
Hals "Paul Potter's Bull," a poor production " Barry Lyndon" 

Gladstone His portrait of 1879 Sir Edward Poynter on this picture 
It is presented to the nation Letter from Mr. Gladstone to the author 

Alcyone Stepney " Cherry Ripe " Appreciations from distant 
lands " Princess Elizabeth " Sophie Millais sits for the picture 
Lines on "Princess Elizabeth" Eastwood Thomas T. Millais a 
D.C.L. of Oxford John Bright Millais paints his own portrait for the 
Uffizzi Gallery Miss Beatrice Buckstone Letter from Sir William 
Richmond The Millais Exhibition, 1881 Letters from artists Lord 
Beaconsfield Letters from him His very last letter His death 
Autograph letter from the Queen Millais paints, for Her Majesty, a 
small replica of Lord Beaconsfield's portrait 93 


Tennyson Edward Lear's music Tennyson's dislike to servants in the 
room He recognises a strong likeness between himself and Charles 
Dickens Millais paints his portrait Sir Henry Thompson's portrait by 
Millais Millais' portrait by Sir Henry Thompson Sir John Astley 
Cardinal Newman John Garret Murthly A perfect Highland resi 
dence Good sport Yarns of the river A monster salmon The 
careful sportsman A solemn warning strangely expressed Thomas 
Carlyle An anecdote of him The Hanging Committee Mrs. James 
Stern Millais becomes a member of the Institute of France " Pomona " 

" Nell Gwynne " " The Grey Lady " Pictures of 1884 A portrait 
from scant materials Second portrait of Mr. Gladstone Millais visits 
Mr. Gladstone at Hawarden John Gould A visit to the old naturalist 

" The Ruling Passion " " Found " Millais becomes a baronet 
Letter from Mr. Gladstone Congratulations A story by Lord James 

A dinner party of thirteen, and what followed 141 


" Bubbles " The model The true history of the picture Ignorant criti 
cism Marie Corelli's mistake Her apology The artist's model 
The Grosvenor Exhibition, 1886 Millais meets "The Huguenot" again 

" Mercy " Millais' love for the Highlands and its people Autumn 
and winter landscapes An artist taking hints " The Old Garden " 
Third portrait of Mr. Gladstone Mr. Gladstone's letter The National 
Portrait Gallery A strong appeal " Dew-drenched Furze " . .186 


Portraits of Millais An American " double" A counterfeit friend Per 
sonal habits The sacred umbrella, and what became of it The ad 
vantage of a strong voice "Old Gallipots " Books and latter-day 



illustration Chess An acrostic Lines on Royal Academy Exhibition 
4k Twa Dogs " Invitation to H. S. Marks, R.A. Begging letters 
A draughty situation Autograph hunters Lines for music A visit 
to Millais' birthplace Rev. Armstrong Hall on Millais and the influence 
of his northern home Spielmann on his life and death . . . .217 


George du Maurier A man after Millais' own heart Du Mauri er's love of 
the colossal and the grotesque The giantess Millais moralises for once 

Punch His admiration for the Knights of the Round Table and their 
work Visit of Du Maurier and his daughter to Murthly Illustrated 
letter of Du Maurier A present of game in verse Letters Charles 
Dana Gibson " Trilby " Over-work A reward that comes too late . 265 


Pictures of 1 890 Farewell to Murthly Portraits of Gladstone and his 
grandchild The story of u Emma Morland " * Halcyon Days " The 
Fire at Nevvmill " Blow, Blow, thou Winter Wind" An obliging 
collie Failing health Millais abandons work for a while Portrait of 
John Hare Continued illness Lord Rosebery's advice Death of Mrs. 
Gray "Speak! Speak !" Professor Herkomer on Millais' work 
Letters from Linley Sambourneand Professor Richmond Millais reverts 
to the serious subjects of his youth Notes by Rev. Armstrong Hall . 285 


Serious illness of Lord Leighton Leighton asks Millais to take his place as 
President of the Royal Academy Last meeting of the two friends 
Leighton's last letter to Millais The Academy banquet, 1895 Letter 
from Lord Rosebery A yachting trip to Jersey The juvenile octo 
genarian A grievous disappointment Pathetic letter to Frith Death 
of Lord Leighton Millais is elected President of the Royal Academy 
Letters of congratulation A tribute from Punch Serious illness 
Millais' last visits to the Academy The beginning of the end He 
says farewell to his old friends His death and burial Touching lines 
in Punch Subject pictures 314 


His Art life and methods The joy of work Methods Materials Models 

The difficulty of painting children Sitters and their peculiarities 
" The Most Beautiful Woman in the World " Millais as an animal 
painter Modelling Millais as a critic His views on Art Latter-day 
illustration Advice to young students The National Gallery Sir 
Henry Tate The Gallery of British Art Critics Notes by Mrs. 
Perugini 338 




Reminiscences of Millais, by Valentine Prinsep, R.A 376 


Some Recollections of Millais, by Lord James of Hereford, Mrs. Richmond 
Ritchie, and his Daughter (Mrs. Charles Stuart- Wortley) . . .403 


Sir Noel Paton, R.S.A. Professor Sir William Richmond, R,A Sir George 
Reid, F. R.S.A. H. W. B. Davis, R.A. Lines by the Poet Laureate . 430 


Chronology 463 

Lineage ........ . 464 

Chronological list of Millais' works 

Oil Paintings 466 

Water-colours 487 

Black-and-white drawings 489 

Etching 494 

Engraved pictures 495 

Index . 499 



EUPHEMIA CHALMERS GRAY (Lady Millais) at the age of 18. From a pencil 

drawing by G. F. Watts, R.A Frontispiece 

ALFRED LORD TENNYSON. iSSi. Published by permission of James Knowles, 

Esq., owner of the copyright 142 



MERCY 372 


Rosalind and Celia 3 

Sketch f or 4< Jephthah's Daughter" 7 

Jephthah's Daughter 9 

The Martyr of the Solway 15 

Sketch for " The Boyhood of Raleigh " 17 

" Victory, O Lord !" 21 

Chill October 27 

Charles Dickens after Death 3! 

Mrs. Bischoffsheim 37 

Letter from Sir E. Landseer to Mrs. Millais 42 

Letter from Sir E. Landseer to Mrs. Millais 43 

Nell Gwynne 45 

The North-west Passage 49 

"Stitch! Stitch! Stitch!" 53 

The Deserted Garden 59 

Lady Chesham 63 

The Marchioness of Ormonde 67 

Countess Grosvenor 7! 

The Duchess of Westminster 77 

A Yeoman of the Guard 81 

The Earl of Shaftesbury 85 

Thomas Carlyle 89 

The Bride of Lammermoor 95 

Effie Deans 99 

The Princes in the Tower 103 

The Right Honourable W. E. Gladstone. 1879 m 

Cardinal Newman 115 

Pencil Sketch nS 

Cherry Ripe up 

Princess Elizabeth in the Tower 125 

Sweetest Eyes 129 



The Earl of Beaconsfield 135 

The Last Letter written by the Earl of Beaconsfield 138 

The Last Letter written by the Earl of Beaconsfield 139 

Millais. By Sir Henry Thompson, Bart. 144 

Sir Henry Thompson, Bart 145 

Sir John Astley 149 

The Right Honourable John Bright 153 

J. C. Hook, R.A 157 

Miss Alcyone Stepney 163 

Diana Vernon 167 

The Ruling Passion 171 

Mrs. James Stern 175 

Cinderella 179 

Pomona 183 

Bubbles 187 

Oil Study of a Girl in Greek Dress 193 

Head of k< Portia" 197 

Murthly Moss 201 

The Old Garden 205 

Beatrice Caird 211 

Lilacs 215 

Millais (profile). 1854 218 

Millais (full-face). 1854 219 

Miilais. By G. F. Watts, R.A 221 

Millais. By himself. 1879 223 

George Millais 224 

Lady Millais 225 

Eton Boys 227 

Everett Millais 230 

George Millais 231 

Mary Millais 233 

Forget-me-Not 236 

The Last Rose of Summer 237 

At Dalguise 240 

Reading the Times after Breakfast 241 

Mrs. C. Stuart- Wortley 243 

Millais and John Bright 246 

John Guille Millais 247 

A Rest for Lunch and a Pipe .... 251 

Dalguise. 1879 253 

The best Photograph of Millais 255 

Millais, Mr. Gladstone, and Mrs. Gladstone, at Hawarden 257 

Millais in his Studio 259 

Last Photograph taken of Millais 263 

Quelle Patience il Faut ! 271 

George Du Maurier 275 

A Contrast 280 

Stndy for "Grace" 286 

" The Little Speedwell's Darling Blue " 287 

Master Anthony de Rothschild 291 

Dew-Drenched Furze 295 

Sketches for " The Last Trek 299 

Halcyon Weather 301 

John Hare o O ^ 

Lingering Autumn , 309 

The Girlhood of St. Theresa 317 

St. Stephen (an early state of the picture) 321 



A Disciple -523 

A Forerunner 327 

The Last Trek .333 

Miss Nina Lehmann 341 

Une Grande Dame (first state) 344 

Une Grande Dame (second state) 345 

Une Grande Dame (third state) 348 

Une Grande Dame (fourth state) 349 

The Earl of Rosebery 351 

Lady Peggy Primrose 357 

Lady Campbell 363 

Lady Dalhousie 367 

Little Nell and her Grandfather 377 

The Mistletoe Gatherer 383 

Perfect Bliss 387 

T. Oldham Barlow, R.A 389 

The Marquess of Lome, K.T 391 

The Marquess of Salisbury 395 

Olivia 399 

A Message from the Sea 405 

Little Miss Muffet 409 

Dorothy Thorpe 413 

The Captive 419 

A Reverie 423 

Study of a Head 427 

Shelling Peas 431 

Head of Child in " For the Squire " 435 

An Idyll. 1745 437 

Fleetwood Wilson 441 

"Twa Bairns" 443 

Sir Richard Quain 447 

The Honourable John Neville Manners 453 

Penseroso 455 


Coat of Arms. Etched by Millais 462 

Signatures 465 





Transition in Art " Rosalind and Celia" "Jephthah '' " Sleeping " and 
" Waking " The Paris Exhibition Holman Hunt's " Liberal Whip " Frith 
and Millais go to Paris Visit to Rosa Bonheur " The Boyhood of Raleigh " 
kt The Flood " Millais goes deer-stalking Illness of his father His death 
Sport in the North " The Knight Errant" Millais goes to Loch More A 
cow who eats salmon " Chill October " Death of Charles Dickens Millais 
draws him after death Dr. Anderson kt Victory, O Lord ! " Dr. Grote 
The Artists' Benevolent Fund ,16,000 collected at the first dinner 
"Hearts are Trumps" Portrait of Mrs. Bischoffsheim Its reception in 
Paris and Munich Mrs. Heugh Autumn holidays Death of Sir Edwin 
Landseer An illustrated letter Mr. Thomas Hills Millais on Landseer 
and his critics He finishes Landseer's uncompleted pictures Anecdotes of 

THE year 1867 witnessed another of the great transitions 
in the period of Millais' Art life. As " The Vale of 
Rest" proclaimed his emancipation from the excessive detail 
of Pre-Raphaelite expression, so the two works u Rosalind 
and Celia" and "Jephthah," painted this year, showed a 
further development one might almost say a new departure 
in the style and character of his work, marked as it \vas 
now by a greater breadth of treatment, while exhibiting the 
same careful attention as before to every accessory and detail 
We have seen how, in earlier years, he struck out a line 
for himself, and regardless of all outside opinions and in 
fluences, sought to paint exactly what he himself saw in 
Nature, omitting no detail, and taking Truth alone as his 
master; and we know how he was laughed at for his pains. 
But " he laughs best who laughs last." The work of those 
early days was but the prelude to achievements that have 
since made his name famous in the realms of Art. They 
were simply years of self-education, of hardship and drudgery, 
ii i 


in which the foundation of his future success was laid. In 
his own words, they " taught him everything." And many a 
time have I heard him say to young artists, who thought to 
escape a grind like this by studying in Paris the methods of 
the impressionist school, " Ah ! you want to run before you 
have learnt to walk. You will never get on unless you go 
through the mill as I did, and as every successful artist has 
had to do." 

Even in pictures that mysterious influence called Fashion 
makes itself felt at times. Impressionism was now the 
latest fancy, and as interpreted by such men as Millet, Corot, 
and Whistler, Fashion was justified of her children ; but to 
young British artists the wave of impressionism that passed 
over Art circles a few years ago probably did more harm than 
good, the apparent ease and simplicity of the works exhibited 
betraying no sign of the arduous toil by which the artists had 
attained their skill. Had any of them been questioned on 
this point, he would doubtless have given much the same 
answer that my father did, and so perhaps have saved his 
art from the desecration of mere hazes of paint by men who 
do not even know how to draw. The public are beginning 
to find this out now to distinguish between genuine Art and 
imbecile trash ; and it may be hoped that under the educa 
tional influence of our numerous Art galleries and exhibitions 
even the most ignorant amongst us will in time come to a 
better understanding of what is meant by Art. 

In " Rosalind and Celia " two or three broad streaks of the 
brush express exactly a fallen leaf which a few years before 
would have been highly worked up ; and both here and in 
other works of the period a distinct change is observable 
in the artist's methods in flesh-painting no less than in the 
treatment of costume and landscape. And yet nothing was 
lost; the quality of the work remained unchanged; it was 
simply produced now with a freedom of touch that proclaimed 
the maturity of the artist's power. 

Millais had ^great^ difficulty with the figure and pose of 
Celia. He painted it originally from his wife's sister, Mrs,, 
Stibbard, who had so often sat to him before ; but for a long 
time^ he struggled in vain to produce the effect he desirecL 
Again and again he painted the figure out, and it was only 
at the last moment, when the picture was about to leave his 
hands, that he succeeded in his object, taking for his model 
a pretty, dark woman, the wife of one of Lord Rothschild's 

s * 


For Rosalind, Mrs. Madley fa professional model) sat, 
whilst an actor took the part of Touchstone ; and for a 
background the artist resorted to Knole Park, near Seven- 
oaks, where he painted it in the month of June. 

Very interesting is it to notice the careful study of ex 
pression in the three Shakespearian characters. There is 
Rosalind full of alert vigilance while entering into the spirit 
of the part she is playing ; but poor, tired Celia, who rests 
wearily beside her, betrays no interest in the escapade which 
is beyond her strength. Touchstone is not tired, but only 
glum and bored, and he certainly looks it. 

The lines chosen from As You Like It (Act II. Scene iv.) 
run thus : 

Rosalind* Oh, Jupiter ! how weary are my spirits ! 

Touchstone, I care not for my spirits, if my legs were not weary. 

Rosalind. I could find it in my heart to disgrace my man's apparel, 
and to cry like a woman \ but I must comfort the weaker vessel, as 
doublet and hose ought to show itself courageous to petticoat ; therefore 
courage, good Aliena 1 

Celia. I pray you bear with me ; I can go no further. 

Good as is the engraving of this work, it gives, of course* 
no idea of the magnificent colouring of the original. This 
is a great loss, as " Rosalind and Celia " is a grand example 
of the artist's skill in harmonising the rich colour of the 
costumes with the softer tints of the sunlit beech forest. 

The picture was sold for a sum far below its value ; but, 
as usual, the value advanced with every change of hands. 
It is now in the possession of a gentleman by whom 
it is fully appreciated Mr. James Bunten of Dunalastair. 
Hanging at the end of the dining-room, in which are no 
other pictures, it looks out upon snow-capped Schehallion 
and the valley of the Tummel one of the happiest reunions 
I have ever seen of Nature and Art. 

" Jephthah," another picture of this year, is in many 
respects quite as fine a work as " Rosalind and Celia," 
though perhaps the subject itself is not quite so attractive. 
Colonel C. Lindsay sat for the principal figure. He was a 
particularly handsome man, with beautiful, deep-set, grey 
eyes, like those of his daughter, Lady Granby. The lovely 
girl walking away with her arm round her sister's waist 
was a Miss Ward, and the two other figures were models. 
This picture (exhibited in 1867) was the first of Millais' 
works that commanded a very large price, showing an 
immediate appreciation by the public of his later acqui- 


sition of power. Mr. Mendel, of Manley Hall, became the 
owner, and on the sale of his pictures it passed once more 
to dealers, finally coming into the possession of the present 
owner, Lord Armstrong. 

This was one of Millais' most arduous years. August 
came the time for him to put away his paints and fly to 
the hills for sport and relaxation but still he stuck to his 
work, partly for the love of it, and still more, perhaps, 
because of an accident that prevented his walking about. 

His life at the time is described in the following letters 
to my mother, who was then staying, with the children, at 
St. Andrews, in Fife: 

" I have been working hard all day (indeed I can do 
nothing else, as I am quite lame), and two days more will 
finish the 'Sleeping 5 ; but 'Rosalind' goes on slowly, and 
I don't see an end to it. ... I must try and do two illus 
trations this month, and a drawing for Macmillan ' Tom 
Brown.' Marochetti called this afternoon, and is to take 
away * Leda and the Swan ' to-morrow to cast. He will 
take the greatest care of it, and I shall give directions to his 
man to put a plate underneath, to make it work better on the 

" I dine to-morrow with Frith, and Tuesday with Mason, 
the artist. I worked from half-past ten till nearly seven, 
without any rest, and shall do the like till all is done, as I 
detest a moment lost ... I have finished 'The Minuet/ 
and part of ' Sleeping,' [water-colour copies] to the utmost, 
almost like Meissonnier, and (with another two days to each) 
I could make them quite as finished. They are certainly the 
best-paying things I do, as I consider I am making a hundred 
a day whilst working. 

" I am quite delighted that Albert [his brother-in-law Albert 
Gray]^is here. He is a very companionable, capital fellow; 
but it is, of Bourse, very slow for him, and if he does n't hear 
from his friends in Paris he should not waste his holidays 
with me." J 

"August, 1867. I have been working hard all day at 
* Rosalind, 5 and it is now another picture. Alices head I 
repainted, as I found it was not in the right place. I have 
made it better at least I like it better and painted it from 
that pretty model Mrs. Madley, who called when Ford [Sir 
Clare Ford] was lunching here. The head of ' Rosalind 5 
also is deficient, but I don't think either wants much now- 




I only want another day's work for c Sleeping,' and I have 
begun ' Waking ' ; but the more I do the more there seems to 
be done, and I don't know when I shall finish ; which is not 
so much to be deplored, as I could n't shoot if I had the 
opportunity, for my foot is little better. ... I am heartily 
sick of work, and I don't care a bit whether I get shooting 
or not ; for I know that, wherever I go, it will be more than 
a fortnight before I can walk at all. If I go to Fowler's I 


must buy a new rifle, and the least I can get a good one for 
j s .40 which is offered to me by Halford [Sir Henry 
Halford], who is not able to shoot. 

"The exertion of painting from ten till seven in such heat 
is more than enough, and I don't pay the least attention to 
anything else. Even if I should be able to get away the 
first week in September (which is very improbable) I should 
not go to St. Andrews, as I have promised Fowler to be 
there at that time. I can get the little pictures done, but the 
' Rosalind ' has a good month's work yet, as I must do the 
drawing, which I can't do properly elsewhere." 


At that time all his friends were off to the hills, while he 
was still slaving away at his easel all day long. What that 
means to an ardent sportsman none but a sportsman ^ can 
know. To me it looks uncommonly like a month's imprison 
ment with hard labour. But perhaps I had better give his 
own ideas on the subject, as expressed in the following letter 
to my mother : 

August i6th, 1867. My models have gone never, I 
trust, to return but I have an immense deal to do. Just 
about half-past four the studio is at its hottest, and I generally 

S've you a line then, as I can do nothing else. Charles 
uxton has asked me to Fox Warren, but I will not leave 
my work. Harcourt is going there, and then on to Scotland. 
He sent rne, this afternoon, a letter fjom Fowler, who is 
shooting at another place, and has had splendid sport 
eighty brace so the grouse can't be bad there. They ex 
pect me at Braemore the first week in September, but I don't 
see a chance of it. ... 

" Last night I dined with Hodgkinson, and went afterwards 
to Arthur Lewis' and played billiards. A number of his 
friends were there, and he seemed in excellent spirits. Val 
Prinsep is in town, and one or two others, but the club is 
nearly deserted, as indeed every other place is, in spite of 
Parliament still sitting. 

" Leighton has gone to Greece and Constantinople, so we 
may expect houris and kiosks next year in the Royal 
Academy. . . . My studio is in a woeful state of dirt, but I 
won't allow it to be cleaned as long as the ' Sleeping ' and 
* Waking' are there ; so I lock my door directly I have done for 
the day, and never open it till I come down in the morning. 

"An old gentleman, Lord H , called with a lady (I 

suppose his daughter) yesterday. He wanted to see me, and 
evidently his reason was to discover whether I was painting 
portraits, as he inquired if I would paint a likeness, and I 
told him on no account. 

"Last night I received a French publication, in which 
appears a criticism of my pictures in Paris, and as far as I 
can make out they are really favourable. ... I expect I 
shall have to give up the ' Rosalind,' but I shall see better 
by next week. However, if I have any doubt I will finish 
the small affairs and leave at once ; so don't be surprised if 
you suddenly hear of me. It is more than I can endure, and 
life is too short to be such a fool as I am, working here and 





hating every touch. The picture, in the bright sunlight, 
looks like a rhinoceros hide ! " 

By August 22nd, however, he became interested in u Rosa 
lind," as appears by a letter of that date in which he says, " It 
is a thousand pities to leave the ' Rosalind ' as it is, and I have 
half a mind to give up all the shooting. I am really getting oh 
splendidly now, but it is terribly hard work in such weather." 

But a few days later he seems to have got into a muddle 
in the painting, to which he had now again taken an intense 
dislike. In a letter of August 27th, he says, "Since writing 
to you this afternoon I have finished the ' Sleeping ' and 
worked all day on the ' Waking.' I am afraid the ' Rosalind ' 
will stick altogether if I don't finish it at once. I would 
rather anything almost than have to return to it, I hate it 
so much. ... I have now finished 'Waking' as well, and 
dine with Hodgkinson this evening, taking ' Sleeping ' to 
Barlow [the engraver] en router 

Happily " Rosalind " came all right at last, and he was 
extremely pleased with it; but he often said afterwards that 
it cost him more hard work and anxiety than any picture he 
ever did except "The Vale of Rest." After this time he 
was hardly ever embarrassed by his work, and never for a 
moment came to a standstill over any picture, his facility of 
execution seeming to increase as the years went by. 

" Rosalind " was sold by the Agnews to a Mr. Hamilton of 
Liverpool, and when that gentleman left the neighbourhood 
it passed into the hands of Mr. A. G. Kurtz. After that it 
came once more into the possession of Messrs. Agnew, who 
sold it to Mr. Bunten of Dunalastair for ^5,000. 

In view of another great Art Exhibition in Paris in the 
following year (1868) an effort was again made to secure a 
fair and full representation of the best British talent, and ulti 
mately Millais was induced to send some of his finest pictures. 
His friend Holman Hunt was, of course, to the fore in urging 
him to do so. His letter is so characteristic of the man and 
his lofty aims that I give it here almost in full. 

From Holman Hunt. 


"May 26M, 1867. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, I was glad to get your letter the 
other day, although I had not in any degree been out of 


patience in waiting for it, for I know by bitter experience 
how hard it is to get time to write to friends. I still wish 
you were going to the Paris Exhibition. Of late I have 
been feeling very strongly indeed the responsibility which 
every man, and especially remarkable and successful men, 
are under to do the utmost that is possible with their talents, 
and I believe that for this it is essential that they should 
know of everything, as far as possible, that others are doing 
in the same branch of work. Of course you will not suppose 
that I mean a great man should bother his little life, or any 
of it, in trying to get medals and twopenny honours in future 
competitions, but he should see and judge with all his steadiest 
powers that he is leaving none of the heaven-entrusted talents 
he has within him unused and uncultivated. All the Italian 
journals here are speaking of the English pretensions to a 
place in the Art world as meaner than those of any other 
nation. It may be concluded, of course, that national pre 
judice and vanity blind this race of patent geniuses, but at 
the same time we should have to admit the possibility that 
our own higher estimate of the English claims may be 
affected by the weaknesses which influence the Italians; 
and at this distance, calling upon my memory of the pictures 
we English painters have produced in the last ten years, I 
must admit that while in little pictures we have exhibited 
certain artistic merits not possessed in the same degree by 
any other country, in seriousness and importance of subject 
we are far behind where we should be, seeing that we have 
about eight or ten really great painters, amongst whom J. E. 
Millais has the highest pow r ers of all. You must not be 
testy with me that I revert to this subject. Remember that 
lately I have had many reasons to think of the perennial 
interests of life. In a few days we shall both be lying in our 
dark bed under the growing flowers, and the naked soul of 
us will have no riches that we have not already laid up in 
heaven ; and these must surely be composed of (amongst other 
things) the intellectual advance which the energy and modest 
scrutiny of man have enabled him to make in his life on 
earth. You may say that I should first do something great 
myself, but I might lose time in waiting. . . . 

"You have really a faculty for painting such as perhaps 
no other man ever had certainly such as none since Titian 
ever possessed. ... In dramatic force I am convinced that 
nearly all the old Art is merely puerile (I have not yet seen 

i868] VISIT TO PARIS 13 

Tintoretto), and that by developing this particular power 
in yourself you may take a position higher than that ever 
occupied in Art to this time. 

" I am well assured that you put my name down on the 
Academy list with the kindest intention. I should, however, 
I must avow, have been unhappy had I been elected, for 
I should have had to do so disagreeable a thing as to 
retire after having been elected. Many good friends of 
mine are in the body, and these I know would not have 
understood my objection to remain, and if I stayed it would 
only be doing violence to my conscience, which will not allow 
me to see in the institution as at present constituted anything 
but a power most injurious to the true interests of Art. . . . 
For my own personal interest I know I am unwise in my 
views. I may lose in professional gains, but I hope to meet 
with enough success to allow me to do my own work in my 
own way ; and with this secured to me I have no excuse for 
considering more about the morrow. . . . 

" Yours ever affectionately, 


In 1868 Millais went to Paris, accompanied by Frith; and 
again Gambart kindly acted as cicerone. Under his wing 
they were fortunate enough to make the acquaintance of 
Rosa Bonheur, of whom Frith has some interesting notes 
in his Autobiography. He says: " In 1868 the Great Ex 
hibition was held in Paris, in which the English school of 
painting was worthily represented, and as worthily acknow 
ledged, by the French. I went to Paris, accompanied by 
Millais, as I have noted elsewhere. . . . Above and beyond 
all the eminent French artists to whom Gambart introduced 
us, we were most anxious to make the acquaintance of 
Mademoiselle Rosa Bonheur. Our desire was no sooner 
made known to that lady than it was gratified, for we 
received an invitation to luncheon with her at her chateau, 
in the Forest of Fontainebleau. See us, then, arrive at the 
station, where a carriage waits, the coachman appearing to 
be a French abbe. The driver wore a black, broad-brimmed 
hat and black cloak, long white hair, with a cheery, rosy face. 

" ' But that red ribbon ? ' said I to Gambart. c Do priests 
wear the Legion of Honour ? J 

" c Priest ! ' replied Gambart ; c what priest ? That is 
Mademoiselle Bonheur. She is one of the very few ladies 


in France who is decoree. You can speak French; get on 
the box beside her.' 

"Then, chatting delightfully, we were driven to the 
chateau, in ancient times one of the forest-keeper's lodges, 
castellated and picturesque to the last degree ; date about 
Louis XIII. There lives the great painter with a lady 
companion; and others, in the form of boars, lions, and 
deer, who serve as models. The artist had little or nothing 
to show us of her own work. Her health had not been 
good of late ; besides, when her work is done c it is always 
carried off/ she said. Stretching along one side of a very 
large studio was a composition in outline of corn-threshing 
(in Spain, I think), the operation being performed by horses, 
which are made to gallop over the sheaves a magnificent 
work, begging to be completed. 

" ' Ah,' said the lady, looking wistfully at the huge canvas, 
1 1 don't know if I shall ever finish that ! ' 

" Of course Millais was deservedly overwhelmed with 
compliments, and I came in for my little share. That the 
luncheon was delightful goes without saying. One incident 
touched me. We spoke much of Landseer, whose acquaint 
ance Rosa Bonheur had made on a visit to England, and 
with whose work she had, of course, great sympathy. 
Gambart repeated to her some words of praise given by 
Landseer to a picture, of hers then exhibiting in London. 
Her eyes filled with tears as she listened." 

It would be too great a tax upon the patience of my 
readers to trace the history of Millais' works outside of 
those best known to the public. I shall, therefore, confine 
my attention henceforward to his chefs d'ceuvres, merely 
mentioning the titles and dates of others as they were 
painted, and adding at the end of Volume II. a catalogue 
as complete as I can make it, with some few notes on 

It will be noticed that in the selection of a model 
Millais commonly wandered more widely than most of his 
craft, rarely resorting to professionals, except where the exact 
set of a costume or a steady pose of figure or limb was 
necessary to his work. In other cases he generally found 
what he wanted amongst personal friends or members of 
his own family, who were always glad to render him any 
service in their power. For his diploma picture, "A 

By permission qftfte Corporation of Liverpool 


Souvenir of Velasquez " (painted in 1867) he was fortunate 
enough to find a model in a pretty child who was sitting 
by him in church one Sunday, and whose parents (strangers 
to him) kindly allowed her to come to him. 

In his minor works portraits of his own children are of 
common occurrence, and in one of his larger pictures " The 
Wolfs Den " Everett, George, Effie, and Mary are all seen 
together (their first appearance as a group), playing at "wild 


animals." Arrayed in wolf-skins, the children are emerging 
from the recesses under the grand piano. 

"The Boyhood of Raleigh" (painted in 1870) is another 
and much more important work, in which members of the 
family appear, the two boys being painted from my brothers 
Everett and George (both now deceased) ; but for the sailor, 
who is entrancing them with romantic tales of the Spanish 
main, a professional model was employed. The background 
was painted at Lady Rolles' place, on the Devonshire "coast. 

For a full description of the picture I am indebted to 
Mr. Stephens, the Art critic, who, writing in one of the 


reviews of that year, says : " This work glows in the warm 
light of a Devonshire sun, and shows the sunburnt, stalwart, 
Genoese sailor one of those who were half pirates, half 
heroes, such as Kingsley has delighted countless boys by 
describing seated, with his brawny, bronzed shoulders 
towards us, on a sea wall, while before him, and at ease 
upon the floor, are Raleigh and his brother, listening eagerly 
and with rapt ears to the narration of wonders on sea and 
land. The sailor points to the southward, for there lies the 
Spanish main, the scene of all his troubles and adventures. 
The young Walter sits up on the pavement, and with his 
hands locked about his raised knees, and with fixed, dreaming 
eyes, seems to see El Dorado, the islands of the east and 
west, the 'palms and temples of the south,' as well as the 
Mexican and other monarchs he had read about. Ships, 
gold, the hated Spaniards, and (most brilliant of all) that 
special object of his life's endeavours, the ' fountain of youth/ 
were before his fancy. The other boy, whose intelligence 
is not of the vision-seeing sort, but rather refers to the 
visions of others, lies almost at length on the ground, leaning 
his chin within both hands. A toy ship stands near the 
boys. The scene includes a low pier or wall, as of a battery 
looking on to the sea, which, shimmering and barred with 
delicate hues of blue and green, reflects on a sunny sky. 
At the feet of the group lie a starfish, seaweed, a rusty 
anchor, and waste of the beach, with some stuffed birds of 
outlandish sorts and bright plumage, and dry flowers." 

In the same year was painted " The Flood," for which my 
sister Sophie (Mrs. MacEwen), then a baby, sat, or rather 
lay in her cradle her first appearance in public. The 
subject, as Mr. Stephens says, "was first suggested by a 
real occurrence of a child being borne away on the waters 
in its cradle, which took place at Sheffield in 1864; and 
the artist's intention of using the incident is noted in Charles 
Reade's novel, Put Yourself in His Place? 

A little tale attaches to this picture which I think is worth 
recording. Fifteen years later it was in 1885 my father 
saw it again, at an exhibition of his works in the Grosvenor 
Gallery, and after looking at it for some time it flashed 
across his mind that he could very materially improve it by 
repainting part of the background. It would cost him, of 
course, a considerable amount of time and trouble to effect 


this change; but that was nothing: he never thought of 
himself in a matter of this sort The alteration must be 
made; and, feeling sure that the owner would be highly 
gratified by the attention, he had the picture sent at once 
to Palace Gate, and did what was required to set it right 
But (as the old saying is) he reckoned without his host So 
far from being pleased with the attention, the owner, when 
he saw it in the studio, was very angry. " You have spoilt 
my picture," he cried. "Oh, no, I have not," said Millais 
with a smile, and with two or three wipes of a turpentine rag 
he swept away for ever the hated " improvement" " There 's 
your picture," he said, and, to the amazement of the owner, 
there it was, with the background and everything else 
precisely the same as before ! 

The kitten in the child's cradle belonged to the Millais* 
household, but was surreptitiously captured by Fred Walker, 
in whose Life it is mentioned under the expressive name of 
" Eel-eye." It was an evil-minded little miscreant, but its 
moral defects were forgotten in the halo of Art with which it 
was held to be invested. 

Millais painted the background of " The Flood " close to 
Windsor, going there during some inundations. The old 
cradle was a Scotch one, the property of T. Faed, R.A. 

The winter of 1867 was rendered memorable by two visits 
from Rubinstein, the famous pianist, on an introduction by 
Professor Ella. My father and mother were both passion 
ately fond of music, and on the second visit he was good 
enough to play the whole evening, to the great delight of 
themselves and their friends. In after years they often talked 
of the intense pleasure he had given them. 

In the following year (1868) Millais was mainly engaged 
on " The Sisters " (a picture of his daughters Effie, Mary, 
and Carrie, in white dresses and blue sashes), a portrait of 
Sir John Fowler, "The Gambler's Wife," "Stella," and 
" Vanessa." And in the Academy he. exhibited " Rosalind 
and Celia," " The Sisters," " Stella," and " Pilgrims to St. 
Paul's." The autumn he spent, as usual, in Scotland, stay 
ing some time with his friends Sir William Harcourt and 
Sir Edwin Landseer ; and after a brief visit at Braemore, as 
the guest of Sir John Fowler, he went on to Fannich, when 
Landseer also took up his quarters there. 

In the Academy of 1869 he exhibited " The Gambler's 


Wife," and portraits of Sir John Fowler and Miss Nina 
Lehmann.* His well-known work, <k The Widow's Mite," 
was also painted this year. 

And now, on the approach of autumn, his father's health, 
which had for some time been a source of anxiety to the 
family, became so much worse that when August came 
Millais was afraid to start for his usual holiday in the North. 
On the i8th of that month the old man, who was then living 
at Kingston, near London, was seized with paralysis ; and on 
the following day Millais wrote to his wife, who had gone 
to Scotland in the hope of his joining her there, " Since 
writing hastily this morning I have taken my father in a 
brougham home to Kingston, as I did n't like the moving 
from one conveyance to another, and when I got him home 
he was better and spoke more clearly ; but he has evidently 
had a serious shock, which he will never get over. He is so 
tottering that he cannot rise from his chair without assistance, 
and when I took him into the studio he was dreadfully over 
come on seeing the picture of The Widow.' Altogether he 
is so weak, it is melancholy to see him. I stayed with him 
till seven, and called on Kershaw, the Kingston doctor, who 
was to receive a letter about his case. ... I shall not leave 
town until I am quite satisfied about his state." 

And again, on the i6th of August, he wrote : "I have been 
every other day to Kingston to see my father. I was with 
him yesterday for some hours, sitting in his garden, watching 
the fish in the stream which flows at the end of the walk 
under a pretty weeping willow. He was weaker yesterday, 
but clearer in the eyes, and, I think, on the whole, better. 
I called twice to see Kershaw, and left word he is to write 
and let me know whether it is safe for me to leave. My 
father wishes me to go, and I almost think I might now, as I 
don't imagine he is in any danger. His head is quite clear, 
and I know he would be delighted to hear from you ; so write 
a cheery letter about the children. ... I dined yesterday at 
Little Holland House, and to-day with Val Prinsep. Am 
not working at all, for I am too tired." 

His father a fine old gentleman, who had many friends 
and never an enemy passed away peacefully on January 

* Mr. Barwell writes : " It is extremely difficult for a portrait painter to satisfy 
a devoted parent who adores his child. In this case the writer asked Mr. Lehmann 
if the likeness satisfied him. The reply was, < When I look upon that picture I 
am looking at my child.'" 

"VICTORY", O LORD!" 1870 
By permission of the Corporation of Manchester 

1869] "THE WIDOW'S MITE" 23 

28th, 1870. He had lived to witness the success of his son 
for which both he and his good wife had made so many 
sacrifices and now that his fondest wish was gratified he 
was content to enter upon the long sleep that awaits 
us all. 

In 1869 Major Vans-Agnew and John Campbell, of the 
Indian Civil Service, joined Millais in grouse-shooting near 
Loch Maree and the little deer forest of Torridon, in 
Ross-shire, where they had splendid sport. But his ex 
perience later on in the season was not quite so happy. 
At that time two forests in Scotland were in the hands of 
men who were tuft-hunters rather than sportsmen, and on 

his visits to one of them (at B ) he found to his chagrin 

that instead of the equality of treatment commonly meted out 
to sportsmen, the chance of a shot depended on the social 
rank of the shooter. As he said in a letter to his wife, 
" Every day there was a lord on the best beat, a baronet 
on the second-best beat, and I have to scrape along the 
outside where there are no stags " ; and in another letter, 
" I have just returned from my second unsuccessful stalk, 
and, as before, no shot ; and that is not surprising, as there 
are no deer on the ground where I am sent ! Had I gone 
to B 's [another house where similar snobbishness pre 
dominated], as I was asked to do, it would have been even 
worse. However, there is the river, which is fair anyhow. 

The Lord X (who is a capital chap) and the baronet 

go away to-morrow, so I shall, perhaps, have a shot* before 
I^go. Anyway, I don't much care for sport under such 
circumstances, nor whether I kill twenty stags or none! 
When things are worked in that way no sportsman does. I 
have got strong and feel well ; and that is the great thing." 

In 1 870 the new galleries in Piccadilly were opened for 
the first time, and Millais sent four subject-pictures " The 
Boyhood of Raleigh; 5 A Widow's Mite," " Flood," and " A 
Knight Errant." "The Widow's Mite" originated in this 
wise. After finishing " The Gambler's Wife " the model 
came one morning dressed in widow's weeds, and begged to 
see the artist. He was much touched at seeing her pale, sad 
face, and on hearing her story, which was the usual tale of 
penury, he asked her to come again next day, dressed as 
she was, as he could, perhaps, think of a good subject She 
came accordingly, and he at once commenced " The Widow's 
Mite," with her as a model. 


About " The Knight Errant " the only picture of Millais' 
in which the nude figure is seen I have a word or two 
to say. It is admittedly one of the finest examples of 
his art; and, to my mind, a more modest or more beautiful 
work was never limned ; but the Pharisaic spirit of the age 
was against it. Mrs. Grundy was shocked, or pretended 
to be, and in consequence it remained long on the artist's 
hands, no one daring to buy it. At last (in 1874) a dealer 
purchased it, and (with this " hall-mark ") it at once gained 
the favour of the public. Then Mr. Tate came forward 
as a purchaser, and thanks to him, it is now in the gallery 
he so generously gave to the nation. Both the figures were 
from models, and the woodland background was painted 
at Wortley Chase. 

Millais originally painted the distressed lady who had been 
robbed, stripped, and bound by the thieves, as looking at 
the spectator, and I remember well this position of the head 
in the picture as it hung on the drawing-room walls at 
Cromwell Place ; but after a while he came to the con 
clusion that the beautiful creature would look more modest 
if her head were turned away, so he took the canvas down 
and repainted it as we see it now. 

His work this year (including two fine portraits in 
oil, "The Marchioness of Huntly " and "Sir John Kelk," 
neither of which was exhibited), kept him in town a month 
later than usual; but September found him amongst the hills 
again, where he seems to have had excellent sport. Writing 
to my mother from Loch Luichart, he says: "I arrived 
here on Thursday. Went out on Friday and missed two 
stags, then went out yesterday and killed two and a fawn, 
which was running by the side of the first stag I shot. It 
was on the other side, so when we went up to the stag 
we found it wounded beside the dead (maybe) father. . . . 
I am going to fish the* Blackwater to-morrow, which is, 
I believe, a pretty good river. This place is lovely, but 
the weather yesterday in the forest was terrible with rain 
and snow. However, I stand it well, and shot both stags 
through the heart There are only Kelk's two sons and 
a Harrow boy here, but another college companion comes 
to-morrow. They are all very nice and kind, and the house 
most comfortable." 

Later on in the same month he writes from Braemore : 
" I have not heard a word how you are getting on, but it 


may be there was a letter to me after I left Loch Luichart. 
I left on Thursday, as my remaining there interfered with 
his [Kelk's] boys' sport. Only one can go out stalking each 
day, and they were so generous they were always wishing 
me to go. ... I was very lucky, and shot well, killing four 
stags in three days' stalking. 

" I go on to Lord Westminster's (Loch More, by Lairg, 
Sutherland) on Monday, and shall be there a week and then 
return South. It has done me a lot of good. I feel very hard 
and fit for the work. . . . The weather has been alternately 
summer and winter. Two days in the mountains were cruel, 
and I was hailed and snowed upon for hours." 

During this period (1867-1871) he enjoyed excellent deer 
stalking on Braemore, Fannich, Loch Luichart, Dunrobin, 
and Loch More. Many splendid stags, including five royals, 
fell to his rifle, some of his best and most exciting stalks 
being on Braemore. There is a capital sketch by him in the 
game-book at that house, in which he appears standing over 
two fine harts that he had killed right arid left after a long 
and exciting stalk. But it was of his pursuit of a big ten- 
pointer on Loch Luichart that he was most fond of talking. 
The weather had been cold and wet, which (as all sportsmen 
know) keeps deer constantly on the alert, and for three days 
he had stalked the ten-pointer without getting a shot. At 
last they found him in company with a herd of some fifty 
other deer, and amongst them an eight-pointer, very nearly 
as good as the big fellow. The animals were feeding near 
the head of a big corrie ; but getting a puff of wind from one 
of the back eddies, they all made off along a pass well known 
to the stalker. However, a sharp piece of manoeuvring and 
a quick run enabled the shooters to cut them off, and with 
two shots Millais killed both the big stags as they came 
galloping by at full speed. 

He was now so skilful with the rifle that his friend Joe 
Jopling, a member of the English eight, frequently urged 
him to come and shoot at Wimbledon, anticipating great 
things of him there ; but neither target-shooting nor public 
display was to his taste, so he never entertained the idea. 

From Braemore he went on to Loch More, for stalking and 
salmon-fishing, as a guest of the Duke of Westminster. And 
here a curious thing happened, as mentioned in the Life of 
Joseph Wolf, the animal painter. Mr. Gould, the naturalist, 


who was also a guest of the Duke's, when out fishing one 
day landed a salmon, which he concealed in the bracken 
behind a small bush in a meadow. When he came to look 
for his fish it was nowhere to be found, and after a long and 
unsuccessful search he began to think the keepers had 
purloined it They, however, laid the blame on the cows, 
suggesting that they had eaten it. The idea was scoffed at 
by every sportsman in the house, and to prove its absurdity 
a fresh salmon was brought from the larder and put in the 
same field, when, to the astonishment of the scoffers, the cows 
promptly marched up and devoured it. " Credat Jud&us I " 
was the reply whenever my father told this story ; but now 
adays most naturalists are well aware that salmon or any 
other fish are readily eaten by ruminants. 

It was October loth before he got back again to Perth. 
And now came upon him in overwhelming force the desire 
he had long entertained to paint at least one landscape in the 
country he loved so well. For years past he had thought of this, 
but the demand for his works becoming ever more and more 
pressing, he could rarely escape from town before the middle 
of August, and must generally be back at his work again in 
October, just as Scotland was putting on its most attractive 

His chance came at last. A subject that he greatly 
fancied was close at hand, and he could now find time to 
paint it. Away down the river Tay, some five miles below 
Perth, is a little backwater whose shores are covered with 
tall reeds and rushes, the haunt of duck and moorhen and 
other aquatic birds, and between this backwater and the river 
is a long strip of land covered with willows. Nothing here, 
one would think, demanding special attention ; and, in fact, 
though many artists must have passed the place by railway, 
no one had as yet been tempted to stop and paint it. But 
to Millais this wild landscape, with trees and rushes swaying 
in the wind as he had often seen them, was full of a beauty 
all its own that he must needs present on canvas. Stopping 
therefore one evening at the little station of Kinfauns, he 
made arrangements for commencing work at once ; and so 
" Chill October " came into existence. 

Of the picture itself little need be said. It is known to 
everyone who cares for Art, and its sentiment, so character 
istic of the hand that gave it birth, appeals to every lover of 
Nature in her varying moods. 

o 5: 



U < 

i86 9 i "CHILL OCTOBER" 29 

Lord Justice James wrote a happy criticism on it, founded 
on the ancient Welsh ballad : 

" Maetri pheth yu handfodol i Fardd 
Plygad i weled Anian, 
Galon i demito Anian, 
Glewder i gydfyrd ag Anian." 

In English : 

" There are three things essential to a poet 
An eye to see Nature, 
A heart to feel Nature, 
Courage to follow Nature." 

" Every true painter is a poet. A good landscape is 
especially a descriptive poem, and in this landscape the artist 
has shown us how well he has seen, how thoroughly he has 
felt, and how truly he has followed Nature. 


"May iof/i, 1871." 

Pasted on the stretcher at the back of this picture is a 
sheet of paper, on which the following note appears in Millais' 
writing : " c Chill October ' was painted from a backwater of 
the Tay just below Kinfauns, near Perth. The scene, simple 
as it is, had impressed me for years before I painted it. The 
traveller between Perth and Dundee passes the spot where 
I stood. Danger on either side the tide, which once 
carried away my platform, and the trains, which threatened 
to blow my work into the river. I chose the subject for the 
sentiment it always conveyed to my mind, and I am happy 
to think that the transcript touched the public in a like 
manner, although many of my friends at the time were at 
a loss to understand what I saw to paint in such a scene. I 
made no sketch for it, but painted every touch from Nature, 
on the canvas itself, under irritating trials of wind and rain. 
The only studio work was in connection with the effect. 
JOHN EVERETT MILLAIS. 18^/2 May, 1882." 

There is a little tale about it that my father was fond of 
repeating. While the work was in progress he kept the 
picture at the stationmaster's hut close by the scene he was 
painting, and every morning and evening the railway porter, 
a well-known character, used to help him to and fro with his 
canvas and easel. He took a special pride in this, and later 
on, when the work was finished, he commonly referred to it 
as " the picture we made doon by the watter side." So 
many people asked him questions about it, that at last he 


became quite an authority on the subject, and (keenly alive 
to the glory it brought him) delivered his opinions freely to 
all comers. "Ye see/' he would say, " Mr. Mullus wud sit 
heer a' day, jist titch titch wi } they bit brushes. A' dinna 
ken how the man cud dae it, it was that cauld." 

He had a great opinion of " the man," but none whatever 
of his art, as may be gathered from his remarks to my 
uncle, George Gray, on visiting him shortly after the sale of 
the picture in 1871. " Is it true," he said, "as a' was seein' 
i' the papers, that Mr. Mullus had got a thoosand poonds for 
yon picture he painted heer ? " Oh yes, Jock," said my 
uncle, " that 's all right" "Weel," responded Jock after a 
slight pause, " it's a verra funny thing, but a' wudna hae gien 
half-a-croon for it mysel." 

" Flowing to the Sea," a much gayer picture than " Chill 
October," was also painted this year (1870), and was till 
recently in the collection of Mr. Benzon, of Kensington 
Palace Gardens. The scene, taken from the banks of the 
Tay, at Waukmill Ferry, shows the river in the glowing 
sunlight of the northern harvest-time , and the figures are 
those of two men of the 42nd Highlanders, with a girl 
(Mrs. Stibbard) seated on a bench. There all is joy and 
brightness, the blue stream and the bluer sky, bright autumn 
tints on the trees and the grey hills in the distance, while the 
tunics of the two soldiers give a nice splash of colour, which 
the artist knew so well how to use without a touch of crudeness. 
The scene is little changed since then. When I was there, in 
the autumn of 1897, the same old ferryman was still winding 
his passengers across the stream in the same spot by the farm 
house, and, for aught I know, he is still on his winding way. 

In June, 1870, Charles Dickens died. My father had long 
entertained a tender regard for the great novelist, and went 
down to Gad's Hill Place and made a sketch of him. He 
intended at first to make only a little outline drawing ; but 
the features of the great novelist struck him as being so 
calm and beautiful in death that he ended by making a 
finished portrait, the value of which may be gathered from 
the charming letter I venture to insert here. 


"June i6th. 

"My DEAR MR. MILLAIS, C has just brought down 

your drawing. It is quite impossible to describe the effect it 






has had upon us. No one but yourself, I think, could have 
so perfectly understood the beauty and pathos of his dear 
face as it lay on that little bed in the dining-room, and no 
one but a man with genius bright as his own could have so 
reproduced that face as to make us feel now, when we look 
at it, that he is still with us in the house. Thank you, dear 
Mr. Millais, for giving it to me. There is nothing in the 
world I have, or can ever have, that I shall value half as 
much. I think you know this, although I can find so few 
words to tell you how grateful I am. 

" Yours most sincerely, 

" KATIE/ 1 

Kate Dickens is now the wife of Mr. Perugini, the well- 
known artist, and through her kindness I am enabled to 
present my readers with a copy of this interesting picture. 

The church of Kinnoull (about half a mile from Bowers- 
well), where my mother now lies buried along with many 
other members of her family, was endeared to my father 
by many interesting ties. He liked the place itself, and still 
more the dear old minister, John Anderson "the Doctor," 
as we used to call him and in the winter of 1870 he de 
signed for the church what I cannot but consider one of the 
most beautiful stained glass windows in Great Britain. The 
subject is the same as that of his drawings of the parables, 
of which, it may be remembered, he made duplicates in 
water-colours. From these duplicates enlarged drawings 
were made and reproduced in glass with a success even more 
brilliant than he had anticipated. 

The old " Doctor " (now, alas ! gathered to his fathers) 
was so remarkable a character and so intimate a friend of 
my father's, that a few words about him here will not, I hope, 
be considered out of place. He was one of the old school 
of parsons, now, unhappily, dwindling in number day by day. 
A man of highly cultivated mind, and a born orator, he 
never failed to interest his congregation, rich and poor alike ; 
and, to my thinking, his broad Scotch accent gave an addi 
tional charm to his words as he delivered them from a full 
heart, without (so far as one could see) even so much as 
a note to aid his memory. I have never in my life listened 
to a more impressive preacher. He was a bit of a poet too, 
and wrote verses upon nearly all of Millais' best-known 
n 3 


pictures, while his sporting propensities were mainly limited 
to fishing, on which he was quite as keen as my father. 
Many a jolly day they had together on Loch Leven, when 
anglers there were few and far between, and the sport much 
better than it is to-day. 

Here is what he says about the new window: 

From the Rev. John Anderson. 

" Kinnoull Manse, Monday. 

" MY DEAR MR. MILLAIS, Now that I have found some 
time to study the window, I venture to offer you my unmixed 
congratulations. It is very difficult to single out particular 
portions for praise, where all is excellent ; and, in the pointed 
and polite manner of Mrs. Malaprop, ' comparisons are 
odorous.' On the design and blendings of colour I need not 
dwell, for they at once strike every beholder of average taste ; 
but that which appears to me one of the greatest triumphs 
of the work is the marvellous perspective of the various 
landscapes. Painted glass in general, so far as my acquaint 
ance with it goes, offers to the eye no more perspective than 
that which is seen upon a china vase or teacups. The 
Kinnoull window is of a very different character, and is at 
once a window and a picture true to Nature. In a word, 
I look upon your designs as commentaries worthy of the 
great utterances of Him by whom the parables were spoken. 
. . . Yesterday, to a large audience, I preached my first 
sermon on the ' Virgins,' and I am preparing another upon 
the ' Wedding Garment,' intending to go from top to bottom 
[of Millais' designs]. 

" We are once more settling down to the old gin-horse 
round. The North Inch looks smaller after Hyde Park, 
but we keep our hearts up by looking at the Grampians and 
listening to the murmurs of old Father Tay. 

^"Give our kindest love to Mrs. Millais, and with the best 
wishes for all, I remain 

" Your obliged friend, 


"Victory, O Lord !" (better known perhaps as " Joshua ") 
was exhibited in 1871. In the composition of this picture 
the artist seized the moment when Moses, Aaron, and Hur 
are seen on the top of the mountain, while Joshua fights 

i8 7 i] "VICTORY, O LORD!" 35 

with the Amalekites at the foot, as described in Exodus 
xvii. 10, n, 12, 13. "So Joshua did as Moses had said to 
him, and fought with Amalek : and Moses, Aaron, and Hur 
went up to the top of the hill. And it came to pass, when 
Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed : and when 
he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. But Moses' hands 
were heavy ; and they took a stone and put it under him, and 
he sat thereon ; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the 
one on the one side, and the other on the other side- and his 
hands were steady until the going down of the sun. And 
Joshua discomfited Amalek and his people with the edge 
of the sword." The work is, perhaps, best described by Mr. 
F. G. Stephens, who (writing at the time of the Exhibi 
tion) says : " Moses is seated, his face absorbed in religious 
triumph and an ecstacy of victorious zeal, and he is thoroughly 
steadfast and immovable, while his supporters look as if 
fatigue overcame their energies and destroyed their hopes 
for victory; each of them, though nearly fainting, clasps 
an arm of the chief against his breast, and bears it up with 
his hands back, loins, and lower limbs all centred in one 
action. Aaron, in red, is erect ; he turns half about, so as 
to catch a glimpse of the fight in the valley below the rocky 
mountain side on which the three are placed. Hur has the 
staff-hand of Moses, and, like Aaron, clasps it against his 
breast, bringing to it the support of all his remaining strength. 
Such are the design and composition. Among its more 
striking qualities is fine flesh-painting. Notice the legs of 
Moses, which are as fine pieces of bold and vigorous painting 
as we know. Mr. Millais has had this picture in hand during 
several years past; it does him great honour, and redounds 
to his credit more than many of his recent works." 

Coming down from the sublime to the ridiculous, there 
is a little joke connected with this picture that I cannot 
refrain from repeating. Some years after it was exhibited 
Millais was called upon to paint the portrait of a handsome 
Jewish lady, whose husband, Mr. Moses, had, for reasons 
best known to himself, changed his name for a good old 
English one. This little circumstance was not forgotten 
when the portrait appeared on the Academy walls. In his 
report of the Exhibition a waggish critic wrote: "Some 
years ago Mr. Millais painted a famous picture, 'Moses, 
Aaron, and Hur.' This time we see he has painted her 
without Moses." 


"George Grote," was painted this year (1871) for the 
members of the Convocation of London University, of which 
Dr. Grote was vice-chancellor. And a sore trial to Millais 
was this portrait. For the life of him he could not get 
it right, and at last the Doctor, who had sat to him no less 
than twenty-two times, positively refused to sit again. Still, 
the portrait must be finished; and finished it was, the artist 
parting with it at last in a most unhappy frame of mind, 
dissatisfied both with himself and with his work. Years 
went by; and his eye, now fresh and critical, again rested 
upon the painting, when, to his great delight, he saw that it 
was one of the best portraits he had ever painted. 

In another direction, however, he met with a great dis 
appointment. To him, as to other artists, modern dress, 
especially that of the black-coated fraternity, is a stumbling- 
block that no amount of skill can entirely remove ; and 
when (as sometimes happens) the physiognomy of the sitter 
presents no point of interest, the portrait painter's task is 
wearisome in the extreme. But now the prospect of a 
portrait thoroughly to his mind lay before him. Tom Taylor 
was most anxious that he should paint that tragedy queen 
of her day, Mrs. Rousby, the actress, and (as Millais thought) 
all the preliminaries were arranged; but, from reasons ^the 
nature of which I cannot ascertain, the contract did not 
come off, and Millais lost for ever the chance of a picture 
that he had looked forward to with the greatest enthusiasm. 

It was in this year that the Artists' Benevolent Institution 
was founded by Millais and his friend Philip Hardwick, the 
architect; and a most prosperous and beneficent undertaking 
it has proved. Under its provisions poor artists, their widows 
and children enjoy the same benefits as are provided for poor 
authors by the Literary Fund, or poor actors by the funds 
of the Theatrical Society; and since its establishment, in 
1871, a whole legion of applicants have found relief through 
its instrumentality. 

The origin of this institution was described by Millais at 
the Academy Banquet in 1895, when proposing the toast 
of " The Prince and Princess of Wales and other Members 
of the Royal Family." He said: " In 1871 the late Philip 
Hardwick and I started the Artists' Orphan Fund, and to 
ensure success I asked His Royal Highness to take the chair 
for our inauguration dinner. His Royal Highness accepted 
with that alacrity which he always shows in doing o-ood, 

By permission of Mrs, Bischojfsheim 

i8 7 i] "HEARTS ARE TRUMPS" 39 

and the result of that dinner was a subscription of ; 16,000. 
We gave a second dinner the following year for the same 
object, and I then appealed to His Royal Highness the 
Duke of Saxe-Coburg, who presided in the same spirit, 
when a further sum was obtained of ^6000, making in all 
^22,000. The Artists' Orphan Fund is now a flourishing 
institution, and its prosperity is mainly due to the assistance 
given us by their Royal Highnesses." 

In the autumn of 1871 was painted "The Millstream," 
or " Flowing to the Sea," presenting a view of the little 
brook below the mill at Stormontfield salmon-ponds, some 
six miles above Perth ; and amongst the portraits of the year 
were that of the Duke of Westminster and a fine quarter- 
length portrait of Sir James Paget, the great surgeon of 
the period. Of this portrait, Mr. F. G. Barwell says : 
" A son of Sir James told me that he thought he could 
have recognised the original if only a part of the picture 
had been shown him and with the head concealed, so com 
pletely had the painter caught every characteristic of his 

And now another idea took possession of Millais' mind. 
In a review of his works it was asserted that, successful 
as he was in certain branches of his Art, he was quite 
incapable of making such a picture of three beautiful 
women together in the dress of the period as Sir Joshua 
Reynolds had produced in his famous portrait of " The 
Ladies Waldegrave." He happened to see this review, 
and at once determined to show the world that such a task 
was by no means beyond his power, even when handi 
capped by the ungraceful dress and coiffure of the early 
seventies. The result was " Hearts are Trumps," in which 
the three beautiful daughters of Sir William Armstrong 
{now Mrs. Tennant-Dunlop, Mrs. Seeker, and Mrs. Pon- 
sonby Blennerhasset) appear, engaged in a game of cards. 
That he was not altogether unsuccessful in his effort may 
be gathered from the following notice of this work in The 
Life and Work of Sir John ^Millais, by Mr. Walter Arm 
strong, published in 1885. The author says: "Few of 
Sir John Millais' pictures perhaps none made a greater 
sensation on their appearance at the Academy than this 
group of three young girls. The arrangement is, of course, 
not a little reminiscent of a famous Sir Joshua; but there 


is a bravura in the execution, and a union- of respect for 
the minutest vagaries of fashion with breadth of hand and 
unity of result, which has never been excelled since the days 
of Don Diego Velasquez. And here I may pause for a 
moment to contrast the modern painter's way of going to 
work with that of his forerunners of a few generations ago. 
In the picture last mentioned there are many accessories a 
tall Chinese screen, a bank of red, white, and yellow azaleas, 
a card table, an Oriental gueridon with an empty tea-cup 
and all these, as well as the wide-spreading draperies of the 
three girls, were painted entirely by the hand of the master, 
which, moreover, had previously designed the grey dresses 
with their pink ribbons and yellow lace. In all this the 
distance is wide enough between the work of Millais and 
the ' Waldegraves ' of Reynolds, in which, as Walpole tells 
us, the journeyman had finished the table, etc., with the 
minuteness of a Dutch flower-painter. During the lifetime 
of Lady Waldegrave a small copy of Millais' picture used 
to hang at Strawberry Hill, near the group of Walpole's 
nieces. It served, at least, to show how slight was the 
fancied debt from the modern to the less than modern 

One of my earliest recollections is being sent with an 
important message to the studio one morning, when my 
father was engaged on this picture. He was so completely 
absorbed in his work that, though I spoke to him again and 
again, he neither saw nor heard me ; so I went back to my 
mother and told her that " there was something wrong with 
father, as he couldn't speak." 

Amongst the works of 1873 was the portrait of Mrs. 
Bischoffsheim. It made quite a sensation in Paris, at the 
1878 Exposition Universelle, and again at Munich in the 
following year a sensation all the greater, perhaps, in Paris, 
as at the time the French really knew little or nothing of 
English Art, and looked only with pitying eyes on what they 
were pleased to call "efforts at Art." That they had some 
reason for the sneer, something more worthy of them than 
mere prejudice or jealousy, can hardly be doubted. One 
must conclude, therefore, that the English pictures, except 
the few exhibits that found their way into that country in 
i855 ; were not exactly of the highest order of merit. Indeed 
this is evident from the fact that they now welcomed English 


Art as equal to the best of their own, and placed it at once 
in the class to which it was entitled. 

" Mrs. Heugh " was also a portrait of this year, and one 
that afforded Millais some amusement. He used to say that 
the family were so extremely religious that even the parrot 
whose portrait appears in the picture could not refrain from 
an occasional word in season, and frequently exhorted him to 
" Let us pray " whilst the work was proceeding. That the 
result was satisfactory appears from the following letter from 
Mr. John Heugh, acknowledging the receipt of his mother's 
portrait : 

From Mr. John Heugh. 


"February itf/i, 1873. 

"DEAR MR. MILLAIS, I must not lose a post in telling you 
that the picture not only arrived safely, but that it is magnifi 
cent. All my ladies are in raptures at the likeness, and at 
the picture position, accessories, colour, tone, are all in 
such harmony. They tell the story so simply and so truly, 
just as if one walked into the room and saw her in her calm, 
dignified, intelligent, but reposing old age. I shall never be 
able to thank you enough. 

" Yours very truly, 


While Millais was away in Scotland this autumn he lent 
his studio in London to Holman Hunt. He himself repaired 
to Sutherlandshire, where, having rented the Shin again for 
salmon fishing, he enjoyed excellent sport, along with his son 
George, then eleven years of age. After a pleasant stay at 
Inveran, the two went on to Scourie, where, by the kind 
permission of the Duke of Westminster, they had first-rate, 
salmon and sea-trout fishing in the Laxford and Loch Stack. 

A sad and memorable event of this year was the death 
of poor Landseer, for whom my father entertained a high 
regard. Both he and my mother frequently visited him in 
his later years, when adverse circumstances had crushed him 
to the ground, and he was always delighted to see them, 
particularly my mother, in whose presence he seemed to 
forget his troubles. She always sent him a choice bouquet on 
his birthday ; and in acknowledging one of these gifts, he sent 
her the characteristic letter here reproduced in facsimile : 





One of our greatest friends in these years was Mr. Thomas 
Hyde Hills, a partner of Mr. Jacob Bell, and ultimately head 
of the firm of Bell & Co., Oxford Street. He was also a 
great friend and admirer of Landseer. In 1873 Millais 
painted a portrait of Mr. Hills, and presented it to him as a 
mark of his appreciation of the many kindnesses he had 
shown the artist's children; and in thanking him for the 
picture Mr. Hills wrote : " I am sorry to say our poor friend 
Sir Edwin will never see it, for I fear he is dying, and will 
be but a very short time with us ; but he expressed his great 
gratification and delight when I told him of your kindness. 
Poor old fellow, I should have liked to hear what he would 
have said if he had seen it." 

In another letter he complained of the scanty approval 
vouchsafed to the dead artist's works by certain critics, 
notably Mr. Ruskin; and written on the back of it is a rough 
outline of Millais' reply running thus: "You are healthy 
and right in your preference for Landseer's work to those 
of animal paintings by old masters. Mr. Ruskin's fine 
English is sometimes exceedingly mischievous. Although 
the manner of execution and painting may be preferable to 
Landseer's, no man dead or living has had so comprehensive 
a knowledge of animal life, or has depicted its forms so 
accurately or so well." 

As an artist Landseer had the remarkable gift of being 
able to draw with his left hand almost as well as with his 
right He was also a brilliant talker, and could imitate to 
perfection the cry of any animal with which he was familiar. 
Being asked one day at Lord Rivers' to go and see a very 
savage dog that was tied up in the yard, he crawled up to the 
animal on his hands and knees, and snarled so alarmingly 
that the dog, overcome with terror, suddenly snapped his 
chain, jumped over the wall, and was never seen again. 

Another tale about him my father used to relate. One 
day several members of the Royal Academy were discussing 
in the big room of the Academy the merits of a picture 
which had been hung on the line, showing a youth and a girl 
leaning out of a window on the second floor of an old 
Elizabethan house. The ceiling of the room below them, 
as seen through the window, was so high that it seemed im 
possible for anybody in the room above to stand upright. 
Their legs, if they had any, must inevitably go through the 
ceiling. Various opinions were expressed on the subject, but 

"NELL GWYNNE." 1882 
The joint work of Millais and Landseer 

i8 73 ] "NELL GWYNNE" 47 

all that Landseer said was, as he walked away, " Well, they 
are there, not-witk-standing" 

Landseer left behind him three large unfinished pictures, 
"Finding the Otter," "Nell Gwynne," and u The Dead 
Buck" all on the easels in his studio and his dying wish 
was that Millais, and no one else, should complete them. 
The work was accordingly taken up as a sacred trust, and 
the result, I venture to think, justified the confidence reposed 
in the artist. 

Landseer, as we all know, had a style so peculiarly his own 
that any connoisseur can recognise it at a glance, but that it 
can be successfully imitated by a master-hand, the following 
little story tends to show : 

In the portrait of Nell Gwynne (life-size) she is seen 
passing through an archway on a white palfrey. This 
picture, in which the horse alone was finished, was bought 
by one of the Rothschild family and given to my father to 
complete. One morning a celebrated Art critic called, and 
was much impressed by the work. " Ah ! to be sure," he said, 
going up close and examining a deerhound which almost 
breathed in the foreground ; "how easily one can recognise 
Landseer's dogs ! Wonderful, is n't it ? " " Yes, it is wonder 
ful, 5 ' remarked Millais, lighting another pipe; "I finished 
painting that dog yesterday morning, and have done the 
whole of it myself!" 

The park and trees forming the background of " The Dead 
Buck" Millais drew mainly from Nature, while following as 
far as possible the lines of Landseer's sketch, on the back of 
which I see written " Glen Feshie." This picture went to 

" Digging Out the Otter " was left in so imperfect a state 
that af least two-thirds of it (including the figure, the horses, 
and most of the hounds) had to be painted in, the hounds 
being indicated only by charcoal lines; yet so cleverly was 
this accomplished that I think it would puzzle even artists 
to say for a certainty which was Landseer's work and which 



" The North-West Passage " Captain Trelawny A curious compact Prints of 
Millais' pictures in distant lands " The Fringe of the Moor " Letter to Mary 
Millais "The Deserted Garden " Ruskin disapproves Archibald Stuart 
Wortley Millais gives him lessons Mr. Stuart Wortley's notes on them 
Miss Dorothy Tennant Sir William Harcourt, Lord James, and Millais at 
lawn-tennis " Over the Hills and Far Away" Lord Lytton John Forster 
" The Yeoman of the Guard 7 ' Invitation from the Queen of Holland " The 
Sound of Many Waters " Painting under difficulties A mad preacher 
Commission to paint H. R. H. the Princess of Wales " Effie Deans " " The 
Bride of Lammermoor " " The Princes in the Tower " Henry Wells, R.A., 
on Millais Illness and death of Millais' second son. 

THE NORTH-WEST PASSAGE," exhibited at the 
Academy in the spring of 1874, was perhaps the most 
popular of all Millais' paintings at the time, not only for its 
intrinsic merit, but as an expression more eloquent than words 
of the manly enterprise of the nation and the common desire 
that to England should fall the honour of laying bare the 
hidden mystery of the North. " It might be done, and England 
ought to do it": this was the stirring legend that marked 
the subject of the picture ; and its treatment by the artist 
lent a dignity and a pathos to the words that undoubtedly 
added to their force. " One touch of nature makes the whole 
world kin " ; and here we have the touch in the attitude and 
surroundings of the brave old sea-dog, and the expression of 
his weather-beaten features as in deep thought he gives 
utterance to the sentiment nearest to his heart. By his side 
is outspread a map of the northern regions ; and with her 
hands resting on his, his daughter sits at his feet, reading 
what we may take to be the record of previous efforts to 
reach the Pole. He is at home now this ancient mariner, 
stranded on the sands of life, like the hulk of an old ship that 
has done its duty but as he listens to these deeds of daring, 
the old fire burns within him, and in every lineament of face 
and figure we see how deeply he is moved. 




h- 1 r 


No wonder that those who saw the picture and there 
was always a crowd in front of it as it hung on the Academy 
walls were moved in turn ; and it would seem from a letter 
to Millais from Sir George Nares, who commanded the 
expedition to the North Pole in 1879, that its influence on 
the spirit of the nation for engravings of it found their way 
into every corner of the land was quite remarkable. 

The early history of this painting is worth relating, if only 
as bringing into view one of the most remarkable characters 
that ever crossed the path of the artist. In the wide circle 
of his acquaintance there was but one man who came up to his 
ideal of the old sailor whom he wished to depict, and this was 
an eccentric old gentleman named Trelawny, who, when first 
applied to, resolutely refused to sit to him, hating as he did all 
the works and ways of modern society. Captain Trelawny was 
no ordinary man. His friends spoke of him as a "jolly old 
pirate " ; for his early life was spent in cruising about in the 
Mediterranean and neighbouring seas, and the adventures he 
met with on those expeditions were eminently suggestive of 
the appellation. It happened to him at one time to fall into 
the hands of some Greek pirates, who took him ashore as a 
prisoner, and the end of it was that he married the daughter 
of the chief, and the happy pair spent their honeymoon in a 
cave. With all these vagaries, he was a man of considerable 
talent. Byron and Shelley were intimate friends of his, and 
he himself is well known for his reminiscences of them, and 
his autobiographical Adventures of a Younger Son. 

This was the man whom Millais was so anxious to capture 
for his picture. In later years they had frequently met, and 
at John Leech's funeral, attended by them both, Trelawny 
came up, and in his bluff, unceremonious way shook Millais 
warmly by the hand, declaring that as mutual friends of the 
deceased, " the finest gentleman he had ever met," they too 
must be friends. And so they were. But for all that, 
Millais, fearing another refusal, could not bring himself to 
prefer his request, nor would he listen to his wife's proposal 
to try her persuasive powers on the old skipper. At last, in 
desperation, she went off unknown to her husband, and boldly 
tackled the picture-hater, who, after many refusals, turned 
round suddenly and said in his bluff way, " But I '11 tell you 
what I '11 do. I am greatly interested in a company for the 
promotion of Turkish baths in London. Now, if you will go 
with my niece and take six Turkish baths and pay for them 


yourself, I will come and sit six times to your husband." 
Agreed. My mother had never been in a Turkish bath in 
her life, and knew nothing about them, but go she must or 
risk the success of the picture. So on the days appointed 
Trelawny came to the studio, and being assured that my 
mother had had her bath, surrendered himself to the artist ; 
and so the picture was finished. Not, however, as it appears 
now ; for as a strict teetotaller, Trelawny protested against the 
introduction of a tumbler of hot grog such as an old sea-dog 
might naturally have beside him, and it was only after the 
sittings were over that this was added as an accessory that 
could hardly be dispensed with. Poor Trelawny, when he 
saw it in the Academy, was very angry, fearing that every 
body would recognise his portrait ; and though he remained 
on friendly terms with my father, I doubt whether he ever 
quite forgave this little joke of his. 

This was not the only alteration that was made in the 
picture before it was exhibited to the public. After the 
background and the two central figures were finished, my 
sister Carrie and myself were called in to represent two 
children turning over a globe, in the right-hand corner, and 
every day for about a fortnight did we turn that wretched 
globe, till we hated the sight of it. All to no purpose, too, 
for it was found at last that our figures spoilt the composition 
and marred the simplicity of the tale. So out we went; that 
part of the canvas was cut away, and a new piece deftly 
inserted in its place. The flag of old England now floats 
over the space formerly occupied by our unsuitable forms. 

The female figure was painted from a model, who also 
posed for the picture "Stitch, Stitch, Stitch," painted in 
1876, and now in the possession of Mr. G. F. Watts, R.A., 
" The North-West Passage " fell into the hands of Mr. C. F. 
Bolchow, and is now, by the generosity of Mr. Tate, the 
property of the British nation. 

Considering the vast number of cheap and generally ex 
cellent prints of Millais' works that have passed into the 
hands of people of all nations, it is not surprising to hear 
that some of the most popular have found their way into 
places where one would least expect to come across them ; 
" Cherry Ripe," for instance, in a Tartar's hut, and " Cin 
derella " (gorgeously framed) in the house of a Samoan chief. 
" The North- West Passage " I met with myself in the remote 
wilds of South Africa. I had been shooting springbuck on 


By permission ofG. F. Watts, R.A. 


the Great Karroo, when a tropical thunderstorm compelled 
me to gallop off to the nearest shelter the hut of a Hottentot 
shepherd, some miles away and there before me hung a 
gaudy German oleograph of this picture nailed to the mud 
walls the only adornment of the place. Anywhere else I 
should have been disposed to laugh at it as a ludicrous 
travesty of the original; but here it seemed like the face of 
an old friend bidding me welcome in the wilderness. The 
shepherd's opinion of it was distinctly original. In reply to 
my inquiry, he pointed to the Union Jack as displayed in 
the picture, and said in broken English, " I like that cotton 
goods. It would make good clothes." 

In the autumn of this year were painted the two landscapes 
"The Fringe of the Moor" and "The Deserted Garden," 
the scene of the former being taken from the extreme end of 
the Rohallion ground, beyond the ruined village of Trochray, 
and close to the Loch Kennard march. It used to be a 
favourite beat for black game, and many were the delightful 
days my father and I spent there with our kind host Mr. 
John Bett. 

Mr. Spielmann says of " The Fringe of the Moor " : 
" This is perhaps the best proof of Millais' wonderful ability 
in painting the country without greatly troubling himself 
about landscape composition. The picture, which represents 
a spot in Perthshire famous for black game, and which was 
beloved by the painter accordingly, is not so much a landscape 
as a mighty sketch for a landscape : a sketch of prodigious 
ability and striking verisimilitude. A triumph of technique, 
of drawing, light, and atmosphere; it differs from Millais' 
other works of the kind by the successful introduction of a 
sky with rolling cumulus cloud in movement. Painted with 
great solidity and impressiveness, the picture has been 
severely described, not without some reason, as motiveless 
veracity, except for the Natural History class. But, as has 
been said before, Millais did not care for tradition. If a bit 
of Nature pleased him, he just sat down before it, and 
painted it with all the vigour and earnestness of which he 
was capable." 

Further details may be gathered from the Athenceum, 
according to the following quotation from it that I find 
elsewhere : 

" This landscape, according to the Athenaeum, is a Scottish 


pastoral. The view is taken from near the summit of an 
upland, and the eye is permitted to range across a shallow 
valley to where the 'moor,' or uncultivated opposite ridge, 
rises in broad and lofty undulations, clad in heather and 
gorse, and when the eye can reach no farther, though the 
air is marvellously clear, green fields of the brightest hues, 
traversed by a cloud shadow, slope from our feet to the 
bottom of the valley, where are a grove of firs, lines of 
hedgerows, and sparse trees. The upland near us is dotted 
with furze and fern, and clumps of broom; a cow grazes 
here. A path, a piece of consummate draughtsmanship, goes 
upwards on our right, accompanying and crossing a rude 
stone fence, which, with its fringe of underwood and thicker 
herbage, ascends to the highest point of view. The sun 
itself is hidden from us by a delicate cloud, but otherwise 
his light fills the picture. A great purple cloud lies on the 
moorland hillside. For brilliancy of local colouring, solidity, 
and that wonderful power of modelling which has always 
distinguished Mr. Millais, there is nothing in the Exhibition 
to surpass this work." 

The picture was exhibited at the Academy in 1875, along 
with " The Deserted Garden," " The Crown of Love," " Miss 
E. Tennant," " No ! " " Eveline, daughter of E. Lees, Esq.," 
and the portrait of her sister Gracia. 

The following letter to my sister Mary (then at school) is 
so characteristic of the writer, that I make no apology for 
introducing it here : 

To Miss Mary Millais. 


"November 8/7;, 1874. 

" MY DARLING MARY, Having finished my first landscape 
[/The Fringe of the Moor'], why shouldn't I write a 
line to my own one? Yes, my labours are all over up 
the hill, but only to begin again down in the valley [' The 
Deserted Garden ']. Albeit it is an egg in the basket, and 
I hope a very pretty chicken will come out of it. 

" I have a very crabbed pen (quill) which jibs and shies 
like an ill-tempered horse. What character there is in pens ! 
Each one has its own even the steel ones, which are 
supposed to be all of one pattern. Now you will think 
I have nothing to write about ; and yet I have lost a good 


cousin, who was a Miss Evamy, and Lady M has got 

another little boy. And so it is ; creatures are buried and 
creatures are born. I have been to church this morning 
like a good father, and you can form no idea how deserted 

the building was. Mr. C had few more to address 

than Mrs. Graham, Tina, the Poples, and ourselves. He 
has a choir of boys in dimities now, and we, as his army, 
were as the Clan McTavish, five-and-twenty praying men 
to his' five-and-thirty pipers. 

u Miss Sophie is a wee bit out of sorts. Every day, after 
our dinner, she sings to her mother's accompaniment two songs 
by Lionel Benson like Gounod's, and I need n't add very 
charming. In her red dress she lifts up her head and sings 
like a robin on a twig; and somebody thinks the bird is 
not so pretty an infatuated old foozelam who sits over the 
fire and desecrates the room with tobacco. 

" Mr. Bett is going to dine with me to-day, and I give 
myself a holiday on Wednesday and shoot with him. The 
last day I went out I killed two beautiful roe and a grand 
capercailzie, that came down with a flop that Homer would 
have said made the earth tremble ; but I did n't perceive the 
vibration. I don't think it is maidenly for young ladies 
to wear cock birds' feathers in their hats, otherwise I might 
obtain one for you. 

" You will be delighted to hear that your papa's figure 
is even more shadowy than when )'ou left, as he has been 
walking eight miles every day, and on his legs (may I 
mention them ?) the whole time between, say, half-past ten 
and half-past five. 

"Since our remonstrance with Mrs. B , Carrie's 

writing has much improved, the upstrokes going up like 
sky-rockets and coming down with a thud, thus. . . . That's 
the way to do it, as you know from experience. 

" Give my love to all the good girls I don't care for 
beauty, you know ! and tell Effie when she has learnt all 
the European languages, to get up a little Patagonian, as 
I have some idea of going there for a summer; you will 
all like it so much. 

" Your affectionate Father, 


" The Deserted Garden " was painted from " the wild 
where \veeds and flowers promiscuous shoot " at the end 


of the upper garden terrace of St. Mary's Tower, Birnam. 
It was a lovely spot as seen from the terrace gate looking 
down the hill across the river ; but when I was there two 
years ago I found it much changed, all the wood and 
coppices having grown up and hidden the distant grass field 
and the woods beyond the river, which were formerly in 

The only additions made were the sundial and the hare, 
the latter of which was afterwards added in London, and, 
as Mr. Spielmann says, could very well have been dispensed 

Millais always thought "The Deserted Garden" one of 
his best works, and wrote to that effect to the owner, Mr. 
Th\vaites. " Never mind what other people may say about 
your picture," he said; "it is and always will remain one of 
the very best works I ever did." Ruskin, however, denounced 
it, as will be seen from the following remarks by Spiel 
mann : 

" A touching view, typifying silence and neglect. Millais 
illustrated it with Campbell's verse, 'Written on visiting 
a scene in Argyleshire ' 

' Yet wandering, I found on my ruinous walk, 

By the dial-stone aged and green, 
One rose of the wilderness left on its stalk, 
To mark where the garden had been.' 


" Piteous as such a scene must be to most of us who love 
a fair garden and grieve to see it fall into decay and degra 
dation for neglected cultivation does not readily turn back 
into the lovely wilderness of Nature from which it was born 
the emotion is as nothing to that which it stirred in the 
breast of Ruskin. He denounced with despairing vigour 
the c (soi disanf) landscape ' in which Millais gave scrubble 
instead of growth c Asi finding on his ruinous walk over 
the diabolic Tom Tiddler's ground of Manchester and 
Salford ' and loudly lamented that the man who had 
painted ' Ophelia ' and ' Autumn Leaves ' had turned to that 
summariness which is antipodean to Pre-Raphaelitism, care 
less and incomplete. But the rest of the world hailed in 
it a work of real poetry a verdict which to-day will 
generally be modified to not more than distinction and 

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We had many pleasant visitors during the autumn of 
1874, including a reading party from Oxford, consisting of 
Mr. Aubrey Harcourt (nephew of Sir William), Mr. Smith 
Dorrien, and Dr. Lloyd (now organist of Gloucester Cathe 
dral) a very merry and interesting trio. They had no 
sooner taken their departure than Mr. " Archie " Stuart- 
Wortley made his appearance. He was then in the gay 
and happy state of irresponsible bachelorhood, with no par 
ticular profession to hamper his movements nor any settled 
views as to his future. His interests seemed to be centred 
in guns and sketch-books, and as my father presently dis 
covered in him artistic and. literary talent, he strongly 
advised him to cultivate this, offering, in a \vord, to teach 
him to paint. Lessons in Art were then begun, and of 
these the pupil himself has kindly sent me some notes as 
a short tribute to the memory of his master. Mr. Stuart- 
Wortley, I may say, is now among our best portrait painters. 
He writes : "To have been a pupil of Millais, though only 
for a short time, as I was, is, I believe, a unique experience. 
I can safely say that I learnt more from him in a few short 
weeks than from all the other masters who from time to 
time directed, or misdirected, my artistic studies put together. 
Short as the time was, it served to bridge over, for my poor 
capacity, the deep and often impassable stream that separates 
the amateur from the serious or professional painter. 

" It was at St. Mary's Tower, in the year 1^874, that I had 
the privilege, in response to the kindest of invitations from 
the great artist and his kind and hospitable wife, of not only 
watching him paint and observing his method, but of actually 
painting a small picture alongside of him all day, and under 
the direction of his frequent hints, scoldings or encourage 
ment. In despair sometimes to catch the form and colour, 
or the relative value of varying foliage on different planes, 
I would lay down my palette, and, going round to ^ where 
he paced to and from his canvas, eager, absorbed, his eyes 
glittering like stars in the concentration of his gaze upon 
subject and picture, would exclaim, * I can't draw ^ those 
leaves,' or grasses, or whatever it might be. ' Dash it, my 
boy,' he would say, ' you must draw them. Remember that 
if you don't some 'fellow will come from round the corner 
who will; and then, in an exhibition, where will you be ? J 
Then he would in turn lay down his palette, come round to 
my easel (we were not five yards apart), and, in the kindest 


way, show me where I was going wrong and how to correct 
it I have studied under several masters, and had the 
honour since then of visits to my studio from many great 
artists. They could all tell you the part of your picture 
that was wrong, but Millais was the only one who could 
in five minutes (for he was always in a whirlwind hurry) 
show you how to put it right. I never knew him wrong 
on a point of drawing, proportion or perspective. I once 
heard the present President of the Royal Academy, who 
might be ignorantly supposed by superficial observers, from 
the dissimilarity of their methods, to feel slight sympathy 
with Millais' work, remark that he had never seen a line 
of Millais' out of drawing. And this observation may still, 
I think, stand unchallenged. He would alter and alter for 
ever, up to the last moment, and it was not until he could not 
see how to do any more an exalted point to have reached 
that he would let his picture go. So far from being, as, 
many thought from the freedom of his later execution, care 
less or hurried in his method, he was the most conscientious 
and laborious of painters. His utter absorption in his work 
precluded the possibility of his being anything else, even 
had he not been what he was, the most accurate observer 
of Nature perhaps in the world, and, in consequence, as 
well as perhaps naturally, her most honest and devoted 

" * It does n't matter how beautifully a thing is painted, it 
is no good if it is n't right. It 's got to come out ' meaning 
that it must be rightly drawn, in right proportion, and in the 
right place. 

" At another time ' You must handle your brush grace 
fully ; the execution should be more prettily done.' This 
combination of unerring accuracy with love of beauty (a more 
rare gift than is supposed among painters) is always to be 
found in his work. 

" His appreciation of beauty in women was great I re 
member the intense interest with which we all listened, 
during a discussion on the beauties of the present day, to 
his views on their comparative merits. He very distinctly 
gave the palm to Georgina, Lady Dudley, of all that he 
had seen, though he rated Mrs. Langtry very near her. 
On one occasion, in my studio, he said, c What business 
have you to miss the beauty of that woman's nostril? 
Give me a brush.' And in two minutes he had put in the 

By permission of His Grace the Duke of Westminster 


necessary line to refine my hard presentment. He was 
very strong on refinement and beauty of line in a woman's 
face and on the scale and size of a portrait that it always 
should be under life-size and, so to speak, stand back in 
its own atmosphere behind the frame. Very severe against 
false enlargement of the eyes ' Ah, now you are getting 
to draw them nice and small,' to me on the subject of eyes. 
The only part of a face that could not be painted absolutely 
literally from Nature, he declared to be the juncture of the 
wing of the nose with the cheek, accounting for this view 
by the fact that it is intensely mobile, varying with the 
slightest change of expression, action, or light, and that, 
therefore, to fix it hard and fast in any direction is a 

" A great believer in quality, texture, and what Reynolds 
called ' richness,' he left no means unused. In the boldest 
and broadest treatment we find eyelashes put in with the 
finest possible sable brush. ' What does it matter how you 
do it? Paint it with the shovel if you can't get your effect 
any other way.' He used anything that occurred to him 
the palette-knife very largely. 

"On my admiring the beautiful quality of some subordi 
nate part of his picture 4 Ah ! that came by a fluke. We 
all get happy flukes now and then, but it's only the fool that 
wipes them out.' 

" Another delightful quality, in his landscapes especially, 
was his close observation and loyalty to the truth of objects 
of natural history. He added the keen insight of the true 
sportsman that he was to the perceptions of the great artist. 
Compare the meaningless birds of the conventional landscape- 
painter to the flock of swallows sailing overhead in ' Chill 
October.' Mark the truth to Nature of the roedeer in 
4 The Moon is Up ' ; of the grouse in ' Over the Hills and Far 
Away ' ; or again, of the rooks in ' Murthly Castle.' In the 
same and all his other landscapes are details of foliage, 
grasses, and mosses that a botanist would instantly recognise 
as absolutely true. For him there was no 'staffage'; any 
figure or object introduced had not possibly, but probably, 
been there. 

" No wonder the public were always in touch with him, 
and he with them. He had a great belief in public opinion 
as a whole, and a great contempt for expert, or rather literary, 
crities. He could not have conceived the idea of achieving 

II 5 


notoriety or success by making things black or grey, shadowy 
or incomplete. He loved and worshipped Nature rather than 
painting, and could always find beauty in his own day. Yet 
the worshippers of fads, the affected praisers of all that is 
dark, or smudgy, or insincere, though they yelped at his 
heels occasionally, dared never to attack him in front, and 
fawned on him openly, defeated by his sincerity. 

" Once he seized me by the arm, and made me go round 
the Grosvenor Gallery with him. He stopped longer than 
usual before a shadowy, graceful portrait of a lady, by one of 
the most famous painters of our day an arrangement in 
pink and grey, or rose and silver, shall I call it ? At last 

' It's d d clever; it's a d d sight too clever! ' And 

he dragged me on. 

"He loved the criticism of a fresh eye on his work, and I 
was not the only one who felt the difficulty in his studio- 
of answering his invariable question, c Now, tell me, do 
you see anything wrong ? Does the drawing look right to- 
you ? ' etc. 

" He was interested in all the questions and events of the 
day, and knew all that was going on, as an artist should, but 
he never lost his power of absorption in his work. 

" Mr. Gladstone once, visiting my studio, described to me 
his sittings to Millais, Holl, and Watts. Of Millais he said, 
' I never saw such a power of concentration in any man. I 
don't think I was in his studio for that portrait more than 
five hours and a half altogether.' This was in allusion to the 
famous picture formerly owned by the Duke of Westminster,, 
and now, by the generosity of Sir Charles Tennant, in the 
National Gallery probably the finest modern male portrait 
in existence. 

" * Paint all your friends and relations, and anyone you can 
get to sit to you. You can't have finer practice than painting 
life-size portraits. Never mind the money; never refuse 

" He was a true sportsman a good shot and an ardent 
fisherman. To the latter pursuit he brought the same 
* power of concentration ' remarked by the great man in his 
studio, and he could have killed anyone who began to talk to 
him of pictures when his mind was running on salmon or 
grouse. He often said how many times he had wished to- 
paint a grouse-drive, and, for fear of comparisons, it i& 
perhaps the only thing I am glad he did not paint." 

By permission of His Grace the Duke of Westminster 


Amongst the most attractive pictures of 1875 was " No ! " 
showing a pretty girl reading over a letter she has just 
written, refusing an offer of marriage. This was a portrait 
of Miss Dorothy Tennant, now the wife of H. M. Stanley, 
the famous explorer a young lady whose talents were quite 
as remarkable as her personal beauty. As children, we all 
had a great affection for " Dolly," for she was very kind 
to us, and many a happy afternoon did we spend with 
her in her studio at Richmond Terrace, where, besides 
all her studies of children, was a most fascinating as 
semblage of birds and reptiles, of which she was very 

At her wedding a somewhat painful occurrence gave rise 
to an amusing incident. As the married couple were about 
to leave the Abbey, Stanley was seized with an attack of 
the fever he had contracted during his wanderings in Africa, 
upon which my father, as an old friend of the bride, gave her 
his arm and escorted her to her carriage. The crowd, of 
course, mistook him for the bridegroom, and cheered so lustily 
that he could hardly make his disclaimer heard. " I 'm not 
Stanley; I wish I were. Lucky dog; lucky dog!" He 
came home afterwards in fits of laughter at this ludicrous 
mistake, the absurdity of which was heightened by the fact 
that there was not the smallest resemblance between himself 
and the bridegroom. 

This year St. Mary's Tower was not to be had again for 
his autumn holiday, as the Duke of Rutland wanted the 
place for himself and his family ; but Erigmore, on the same 
hill, and with a charming garden attached, was happily at 
liberty, and Millais, who delighted in the neighbourhood, was 
only too glad to secure it. 

A lawn in front of the drawing-room windows afforded 
ample space for a tennis ground, and as lawn tennis was the 
latest novelty in outdoor sports, we must of course play it 
And we did, after a fashion, my father the keenest and most 
enthusiastic of us all. He was quite fierce in his determina 
tion to master the game, the more so as we were expecting 
visitors who probably knew something of it already. They 
came at last Sir William Harcourt, Sir Henry James, and 
my Uncle George Stibbard and \vere so taken with the game 
that they too must become proficient, or perish in the 
attempt. In deadly earnest, then, they set to work. The 
balls flew about in the most lively and erratic way, and, as to 


the rules, nobody knew exactly what they meant, and nobody 
cared so long as his interpretation was upheld. The thing 
was to get this interpretation accepted by the adversaries, 
and to this end the game was stopped again and again, until 
one or other of the opponents gave way. Never was heard 
such an array of arguments as a disputed " fault " would 
draw forth from that able lawyer, Lord James, or such a 
torrent of eloquence as the great leader of the Liberal 
party* let fall now and again in imploring his host and 
partner to keep clear of " that horrid net," and never did 
the host himself go to work in more fiery mood than at 
this new plaything that had caught his fancy. For hours 
together the game went on in this absurd fashion, the 
genial banter of the combatants keeping us all in fits of 
laughter as we sat and watched the performance. It may 
be better played nowadays I venture to think it is but 
whether more amusement was ever got out of it may well 
be questioned. 

It was here that the scene of " Over the Hills and Far 
Away " was painted. The lovely valley of the Tay, as seen 
from the Trochray beat on the high ground of Rohallion, 
had attracted Millais' attention during his frequent visits 
to his friend Mr. John Bett, who for twenty-five years had 
the shooting over these moors, and except Murthly Moss 
no ground in the neighbourhood could vie with it in point 
of the variety of its attractions to the artist and the sports 
man alike, the scenery being magnificent, while in the woods 
below, and the breezy uplands above, every variety of game 
was to be found. Here then, after a careful survey of the 
position, he pitched his tent a little wooden hut put together 
by a local carpenter as shelter in case of storm and here 
for six weeks he worked away at his picture in great content. 
In the immediate foreground Rohallion Moor itself is seen ; 
in the middle distance to the right, where a wooded hill 
stands in bold relief against the sky, are the Duke of 
Athol's covers of Ladywell; and on the left are the broken 
slopes of Kinnaird. In the distance the river, like a silver 
streak, creeps through the lowlands of Dalguise and Ballin- 
luig, and still .further away may be faintly discerned the blue 
summit of grand old Ben-y-gloe. As Mr. Spielmann thought 
fully expresses it : 

"The almost stereoscopic effect of the foreground up to 

* Sir William has resigned the leadership since this was written. 

By permission of His Grace the Duke of Westminster 

i8 75 ] CRITICISM 73 

the point where it dips away and allows the bright distance 
to be focussed, comes as a surprise to the spectator; indeed, 
but for the extraordinarily unmistakable out-of-door quality, 
that effect might be resented as theatrical. Millais here 
asserts once more his power, beyond that of any contem 
porary painter, of painting sedgy, marshy ground, and rank 
grass bathed in light and air, but the sky is somewhat 
weak. . . . 

" The picture comes nearer, perhaps, to the traditional 
view of landscape composition than any in this section of 
Millais' art. It is frequently supposed, because he did not 
'compose ' his landscapes (I say nothing no\v as to sentiment), 
that he was therefore ignorant of the practice and the views 
of the old masters. Millais was always looking at the old 
masters, and I see no reason to suppose that he \vho could 
appreciate and understand ancient and modern Art as he did, 
lacked the power to see what is evident to everybody else. 
The only conclusion to come to is that [Millais was as in 
dividual and independent in his views on landscape in his 
later middle life as he had been in other respects in his 
Pre-Raphaelite days; so that time, which takes delight in 
revenges, may come in the future to accept as a permissible 
view of landscape that which Millais chose to adopt after 
a painting life of a quarter of a century." 

But, says this same critic, Millais was not "a great land 
scape painter," he simply chose a subject and then worked 
it out with relentless truth ; his pictures therefore lack " the 
elements of great landscape." I must say that I cannot 
agree with this. No fault is found with the selection of his 
subjects, his composition, his technique, or his ability to 
mirror \vhat he saw in Nature. In what then was he lacking ? 
The critic himself suggests the answ r er. He says, in effect 
that in his treatment of landscape Millais showed himself 
" as individual and independent in his views as he had done 
in the works of his Pre-Raphaelite days ; he painted what he 
saw, but in his regard for truth of form and colour he missed 
the underlying spirit of Nature's works." Surely that could 
not be. To him all Nature was but u the garment of the 
living God." Its poetry was ever present to his mind ; and 
that he could convey to others the enjoyment it afforded him 
self is obvious from the sensation created by such works as 
"Chill October," "Over the Hills and Far Away/' " The 
Deserted Garden," "The Old Garden," " Murthly Moss," 


and " Lingering Autumn." Even the names of these pictures 
are not without a touch of his poetic fancy, without a sugges* 
tion of the spirit that animated the pictures themselves. The 
message he had to deliver must be delivered in his own way. 
For this purpose he created a style of his own, and in spite 
of opposition such as only the force of genius could have 
overcome, he converted his adversaries to his own views. 
He won the hearts of men who knew him only by his paint 
ings, or by engravings which found their way into the homes 
of peer and peasant alike; and hearts, I venture to think, 
are not won by mere transcripts of Nature, with the soul of 
Nature left out 

He often said that he enjoyed the work on "Over the 
Hills and Far Away " as much as anything he ever did. His 
materials were all on the spot and he had nothing to do in . 
the morning but take his gun and " shoot " his way up to the 
moor, a distance from Erigmore of about five miles. The 
walk there along the Birnam burn is a most lovely one, and 
lie greatly enjoyed the privilege so generously granted to 
him by Mr. Bett. In the evening he would return home 
bringing a hunter's appetite and a brace or two of grouse, 
with perhaps a blackcock, a woodcock, or a snipe. 

One day, while at work, he noticed a big pack of black 
game coming over from the west, and without moving from 
his painting-stool he threw down his palette and killed a 
blackcock as it flew overhead. But that was not his usual 
practice ; as a rule he never shot at birds that were moving 
about in his immediate neighbourhood. He liked to see 
them and hear their cheery cries. The grouse, constantly 
noting his presence, soon became quite tame, and approached 
:so closely that on one occasion he was actually able to" paint 
in a whole covey before they moved from the spot. The 
birds can be seen in the middle distance, slightly to the rio-ht 
of the picture. * 

This picture, once the property of Mr. C. E. Clayton, and 
afterwards of Mr. Kaye Knowles, is now in the possession 
of Mr. J. C. Williams. 

Brunet Debaines, who made a successful etching of " Chill 
October," entirely failed in his translation of this work, as 
also of 4 ;Murthly Moss." The beauty was quite lost in 
the etching, all the softness and poetry disappearing in 
the cold, harsh lines of the needle. It is a great pity that 
.such a process was attempted, as photogravure would have 


suited both of these pictures to perfection. Apart from 
the happiness of composition and brilliance of detail, 
"Murthly Moss" and "Over the Hills" owe their success 
to the skilful blending of subdued colours, none of which 
are much in contrast, whereas " Chill October," though also 
subdued in tone, is a mass of contrasts exactly suited to 
black-and-white, and readily lends itself to reproduction, 
even in so rough a form as etching. 

A letter to his wife (then in Germany with tw r o of his 
daughters) gives a little insight into Millais' life at this 
time. Writing from Birnam Hotel, Birnam, under date 
of October 3Oth, 1875, he says: 

"I shot at Murthly (only Lord Cairns, Graham,* and 
myself), and dined there afterwards. Yesterday I dined 
with the Manners*, and met Lord Salisbury, whom I liked. 
Played whist after dinner. Still dreadful east wind, and 
all my reeds blown the wrong way. Two or three days' 
good weather would suffice to finish; but it is cruelty to 
animals, painting in such cold and wretchedness. ... 

" I am sorry to see a report in the papers that typhoid 
is very prevalent in Paris. It makes me nervous, hearing 
that, after Everett's attack. Ask Bishop about it. 

" There is no news here, of course. I am all day on the 
moor, and shot a grouse this forenoon. The cold was 
intense, and I took a turn occasionally, to keep up my 

It was at one of the dinner parties this year at St. Mary s 
Tower that, as the guest of the Duke of Rutland, Millais 
met for the first time Lord Beaconsfield (then Mr. Disraeli), 
who, on his way to Balmoral, had broken his journey for 
a few days' rest at Dunkeld. On returning to Erigmpre 
that night, he remarked to his guests what a very interesting 
talker Disraeli was. It turned out afterwards that the great 
statesman, being overcome by the fatigue of his journey, 
had remained almost silent, whilst Millais himself had talked 
hard the whole evening, to the entertainment of the whole 
party, Disraeli remarking to the Duke that -he had^ never 
come across anyone with such a refreshing and continuous 
flow of original observations. 

Two of "Dizzy's" sayings may be repeated here, though 
one, if not both, have already appeared in print. On their 

* Mr. Henry Graham the tenant of Murthly shootings and fishings at this 


first meeting Millais expressed a hope that the illustrious 
statesman would enjoy the quiet repose of St. Mary's after 
his long and arduous work in the session of Parliament just 
concluded. " Yes," said Disraeli, " I am already happy in 
this lovely spot. There are no secretaries or Government 
bags here." And on another occasion, when they met 
again, he told Millais he could never enjoy the Academy 
banquet, for he always had a speech under his plate. 

All my father's friends were most enthusiastic about " Over 
the Hills and Far Away." 

A letter from the Duke of Westminster, whose wife 
he was then engaged in painting, also echoes the same 

From the Duke of Westminster. 


" November 22nd, 1875. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, Elcho, C. Lindsay, and self rather 
broke into your house burglariously yesterday afternoon. I 
hope you will forgive us, but I wanted such an 'array of 
talent' to see her grace then and there. 

"They were very much pleased, as well they might be; 
but it was too dark to see well the landscape [' Over the 
Hills and Far Away']. William Russell [Sir W. Howard 
Russell] writes that 'the landscape caused him real ad 
miration and pleasure, and he does not know of any of your 
works so true and brilliantly agreeable the Scotticisms of 
the foreground wonderful in their faithfulness, and the whole 
composition so strikingly complete as to make it a triumph 
of British landscape painting' in all of which I cordially 

" He praises equally the portrait. 

" Yours sincerely, 


Two notable portraits her grace the Duchess of West 
minster, standing on the terrace at Cliveden, and Lord 
Lytton were painted this year. The latter was a com 
mission from John Forster, the friend and biographer of 
Charles Dickens, and our neighbour in Palace Gate. Forster 
seems to have been on equally intimate terms with Lord 
Lytton, for whose character and poetic works he entertained 

By permission of His Grace the Duke of Westminster 


the highest admiration. He was himself in failing health, 
and fearing that he should never see his friend again for 

Lord Lytton had just been appointed Viceroy of India 
he wrote to Millais in most pathetic terms, begging him as a 
personal favour to make a portrait of Lytton before he 
started for the East. This Millais did, but alas! poor 
Forster died in the following year, before the picture was 
finished. It is now, by the late owner's bequest, in the South 
Kensington Museum. 

In the summer of 1876 was painted u The Yeoman of the 
Guard," a picture which, like the u The North-West Passage," 
could hardly have been expected from the same hand as 
that which created " Lorenzo and Isabella " and " The Eve 
of St. Agnes," so widely different is it from either of them 
in character and sentiment. In "The Yeoman " we have a 
splendid type of the fine old British warrior of which the 
nation is so proud a subject entirely after Millais' own 
heart. He delighted to paint it, and always considered the 
picture amongst the four best that ever came from his 

It was in 1875 that the idea of this work originated. 
Millais, having received a commission from a dealer to 
execute a very large picture of the Yeomen of the Guard 
searching the vaults beneath the two Houses previous to 
the opening of Parliament, made a preliminary visit to the 
Tower of London to see the " Beef Eaters " and study their 
costume. He was much struck with the splendid colour 
and tasteful design of the uniform, and thinking that under 
artificial light its pictorial strength would be lost, he 
abandoned his original idea, and decided to paint a single 
figure in all the glory of the open air. The difficulty was 
to find a model who came up to his ideal wearer of this 
historic costume ; but this at last he found in Major Robert 
Montagu, a grand old man who most kindly came and sat for 
the head and hands. The Major had done yeoman service 
for his country in many campaigns, and his fine dignified 
head and figure were exactly what the artist required. 

Now, to sit to an artist for two hours involves a greater 
strain that is commonly supposed. It is not surprising there 
fore that this old gentleman, who was over eighty and very 
infirm, found the work almost too much for him ; yet having 
once commenced he would not give in. He was supplied 
with soup etc. every three-quarters of an hour; and to 


relieve the strain on his gallant sitter Millais worked at a 
higher pressure than he had ever done before. The head 
and hands were dashed in, and completely finished in a few 
days; and yet, like so much of his best work, it suffered 
nothing from the rapidity with which it was executed. 

My uncle, Henry Hodgkinson, who was one of my father's 
most devoted admirers, and already owned " Pizarro seizing 
the Inca of Peru " and " The Woodman's Daughter " (both 
fine examples of the painter's earlier manner), had long 
wished for a specimen of his more recent works, but his 
limited means restrained him from indulging the desire. 
Now, however, when he saw " The Yeoman " for the first 
time, he could no longer resist the temptation. The picture 
must be his at any cost; and he bought it. A proud man 
was he that day and ever afterwards of this possession. We 
children knew nearly every touch of the brush on the canvas; 
yet every time we went to see the new owner the whole 
category of its charms had to be recounted over and over 
again and carefully explained to us, as if we had never seen 
the picture before. His admiration for it was simply un 
bounded; and when, later on, the artist expressed a desire 
that it should be left to the nation, he unselfishly jumped at 
the suggestion and carried it out by his will. 

Mr. Spielmann's opinion of the work may be gathered 
from the following critique : 

" It was this picture which caused the French artists to 
exclaim at the Paris Exhibition of 1878, and opened Meis- 
sonnier's eyes, as he himself said, to the fact that England 
had a great school and a great painter. This management 
of scarlet, gold, and blue a striking yet not forced harmony 
is among the fine things in modern Art. The subject, too, 
is a touching one the "Yeoman of the Guard," the old 
Beef Eater of the Tower, waiting at his post for that last roll- 
call that will dismiss him for eternity. There is fine character 
in the head the dignity and sense of duty that absorbs all 
his intellectual faculty and a daring, not to say audacity, 
that does not shock because of the power of the painter. 
The effect of the flesh, neither executed by recipe nor con 
cealed by over-painting, is not produced by that savant 
handling we commonly expect from a great master of the 
brush ; there is such conspicuous absence of show of dexterity 
that some are prepared, in this picture, to deny to the painter 
the capacity for cleverness which he did not choose to exert." 


II 6 

is 7 6] A TRYING TIME 83 

The Queen of Holland, who had visited my father and 
mother more than once in Cromwell Place, was good enough 
to send them an invitation this year to visit her, but unfor 
tunately they could not avail themselves of it. The Queen 
was a very clever woman, with a great love of Art, and 
practised it with considerable success. 

" Stitch, Stitch, Stitch," was now painted, and presented to 
G. F. Watts, R. A., in return for the excellent portrait of 
Millais by that great artist In reply came the following 
letter : 

From Mr. G. F. Watts, R. A. 


"July igth, 1876. 

"My DEAR MILLAIS, I cannot tell you how greatly I 
admire the picture you have sent me ! You have never done 
anything better. I shall have it up in my studio, as an 
example to follow. I feel proud of the possession. 

" Yours verv sincerely, 

"'G. R WATTS." 

About this time my father, who had so often called upon 
his family, especially his daughters, to act as his models, 
determined for his own pleasure to paint all their portraits, 
and in turn we all sat to him for this purpose ; but his best 
works this year were the portraits of Mrs. Sebastian Schle- 
singer and the twin daughters of Mr. J. R. Hoare. My 
sister Carrie and myself also sat as models for a picture called 
" Getting Better " certainly one of the least successful of 
his works. 

The autumn unfortunately was rather a trying time for him. 
Having determined on " The Sound of Many Waters " as 
the subject of his next landscape, he betook himself to the 
Rumbling Brig, near Dunkeld, where in a little cottage be 
longing to Mr. Tomson, close to the well-known waterfall, 
he found apartments near the scenery he wished to paint, 
the view being taken from the left bank of the river Braan 
immediately above the fall where it is spanned by the Brig. 
He started, however, so late in the year that he had to put 
up with many discomforts in the shape of snow and storm 
that seriously interfered with his work, as will be seen from 
the following letter to his daughter Mary: 


To Miss Mary Millais. 


" November gth, 1876. 

"DEAREST MARY, I fear that, after all, I shall have to 
give my work up and finish it next year, as there is nothing 
but snow over all, and I have a cold as well, which makes it 
positively dangerous to paint out in such weather as this. 
However, we w r ill see what to-morrow brings. It is dread 
fully dull here when there is nothing to do. I have been in 
my hut this morning, and I hoped a blink of sun would thaw 
sufficiently the snow on the foreground rocks to enable me to 
get on, but the storm is on again, and it is simply ridiculous 
trying to work, as everything is hidden with a white sheet. . . . 

" The madman is still here, and I have had no word from 
Dundee about his family. He preaches w T ith naked feet, all 
day, to the rocks and trees. 

" Your affectionate father, 


The madman referred to was a poor creature who appeared 
nearly every day, and somewhat annoyed the artist by his 
persistent attentions. Writing to his wife on November xoth, 
Millais says: " I got rid of the madman by writing to the 
Superintendent of Police in Dundee, who came this morning 
and fetched him away. He has been under the influence of 

Father P , and was preaching, barefooted, to the rocks 

and trees all day." 

Writing to her again, on November i4th, he says: 
" This picture is full of vicissitudes. I recommenced work 
yesterday, and got on wonderfully, but required water ; and 
it has come with a vengeance to-day; and again I am 
trembling for the safety of my hut, as it is submerged at this 
very moment a perfect deluge, and likely to continue all 
night. I have, however, got on so extraordinarily well these 
last two days that I may finish this week if I have a house to 
paint in. The labour in this painting is certainly much 
greater than in any I have yet done, and it will be very 
thoroughly carried out ... I am sure no sledge-harnessed 
mariner of Nares' crew has worked harder than I have at 
this North Pole of a picture. I stand until I am ready to 
drop, and drink enough whiskey and water to make an 
ordinary man quite giddy ; but without feeling it" 

By permission of the British and Foreign Bible Society 


As he anticipated, the deluge continued. In one night 
the river was swollen to bursting point ; it broke over the 
banks and swept away the painting-house and smashed it 
to pieces amongst the rocks. Happily for Millais, he had 
some warning of what was coming, or his picture would 
have been swept away too. Early in the morning he saw 
the danger, while at work with 'the Tomsons trying to 
strengthen the river bank; and just in the nick of "time 
they seized the picture and carried it off in safety to the 
cottage. Then the weather changed again, turning suddenly 
warm and mild, and in great joy Millais finished his picture, 
and bore it off in triumph to Birnam. 

His last letter to my mother from the Rumbling Bridge 
is redolent of the doubts and fears which constantly beset 
every true artist, even when he has done his best work. 
He says : "I am still suffering a great deal from standing 
constantly in such a damp place, but it is well over now. 
I really don't know what the result is. Sometimes I think 
the work is the best thing I have done, and at others I 
think it is a failure. All I know is that I can do no 


During the summer of 1876 he received a commission 
from Manchester to paint H. R. H. the Princess of Wales, 
who, as intimated by Colonel Gardiner, graciously consented 
to sit Unfortunately, however, the day named conflicted 
with Millais' engagements ; so he ventured to express the 
hope that a later date might be arranged. The Princess 
herself very kindly consented to this ; but for some reason 
or other the Manchester authorities changed their minds, 
and, to the great disappointment of the artist, the arrange 
ment fell through. 

In the following year (1877) he painted two beautiful 
subjects from Scott's novels, "Effie Deans" and "The Bride 
of Lammermoor." The models for "Effie Deans" were 
Mr. Arthur Gwynne James (nephew to Lord James of 
Hereford), my brother Everett, Mrs. Langtry, and Mrs. 
Stibbard. Mr. James was also good enough to stand for 
the Master of Ravenswood in " The Bride of Lammermoor," 
Lucy Ashton being represented by a very pretty girl who 
formerly served in Aldous' flower-shop, in Gloucester Road. 
This picture was finished in February, 1878. Its value as a 
work of Art may be gathered from the following letter. 


From Mr. G. F. Watts, R. A. 


"/iffy 26th, 1878. 

"My DEAR MILLAIS, I have only just seen your 'Bride 
of Lammermoor/ and must write to tell you how much it 
charmed me. Lucy Ashton's mouth is worthy of any 
number of ' medailles,' and the French were quite right to 
give it to you (I disapprove highly of the principle of 
giving such things at all, and may perhaps say so very 
distinctly, but that is another matter). I hope your boy 
is better. Yours very sincerely, 

" G. F. WATTS." 

" Effie Deans," now in the possession of Sir Edmund 
Loder, is one of Millais' most successful pictures in the field 
of romance. 

"Yes!" (another picture of his, painted in 1877) shows 
a pair of lovers saying good-bye.* Mr. Lionel Benson, a 
well-known vocalist, stood for the man, and a professional 
model took the part of the lady. 

Mr. Barwell says, " Within a day of sending in this picture 
the lovely head of the girl appeared to the painter not high 
enough above the shoulders. He had the courage and the 
skill to shift and repaint the head about three-quarters of an 
inch higher a task so difficult that the success accomplished 
on the spur of the moment is truly astonishing. The altera 
tion is said to have occupied one morning only." 

Early in 1878 was commenced his picture of "The 
Princes in the Tower," for which he had already painted the 
gloomy staircase at St. Mary's Tower, Birnam, N. B. Not 
being quite satisfied that the background was sufficiently like 
the spot in " The Bloody Tower," where the boys are sup 
posed to have been murdered, he sent me on three successive 
days to make pencil sketches of the interior; and finding 
from them that he had got the steps too small, and the stair 
case going the wrong way, he- went and made drawings 
himself. Then, throwing aside the work he had already 

* This picture, I am ashamed to say, was the subject of much unseemly jest 
amongst the artist's family, who strongly objected to the portmanteau introduced 
here as suggestive of departure. We always spoke of it to him as, " Have you 
put in my sponge-bag and tooth-brush ? " 

National Portrait Gallery 


done, he started the picture again on a new and larger 
canvas, showing the exact surroundings of the place where 
the bodies of the murdered princes were found. 

The first canvas was eventually used as the background 
for " The Grey Lady," illustrating'an observation Mr. Wells, 
R. A., once made to me : fck One of Millais" most remarkable 
gifts," he said, " was his readiness to grasp at once the utility 
of either backgrounds or models, and assign them, without 
apparent forethought, to the composition of the very pictures 
for which they were most suitable. The face of the women 
in 'The Huguenot' and 'The Rescue,' the old knight in 
6 Sir Isumbras,' and many others were actually portraits of 
human beings, and yet they represented to the fife characters 
in the scenes depicted. It is no easy task to work up from a 
model the exact character that is wanted. Millais just looked 
about amongst his friends, or models came to him, and he 
saw at a glance for what subject or story they were best 
suited, whilst lots of us were racking our brains to know 
what to do with, perhaps, the very same material. Now 
(as a remarkable instance of this) the mother of those two 
handsome boys in 4 The Princes in the Tower' came to me 
and asked if I could make use of them in any way. I saw 
at once what picturesque little chaps they were, and for more 
than a fortnight cudgelled my brains to find some use for 
them. At last my mind was made up, I strolled round to 
Millais' one afternoon to tell him of my intention, when, to 
my astonishment, I saw on his easel figures of my prospective 
models already half finished in the picture we have mentioned. 
The fact was,, that after seeing me, the boys had been taken 
to Millais, who at once assigned to them the characters of 
the young princes, and began his picture the very next day." * 

It is, perhaps, a trivial thing to record, but I have heard my 
father say he could never look at this picture without feeling 
the scrunch of acid-drops beneath his feet. Those young 
wretches, he explained, would bring packets of these delicacies 
when coming to sit, and whiled away the time by eating them. 
Now and then some would fall to the floor, irritating him 
beyond measure when he trod upon them. 

This year (1878) was a very sad one for Millais and his 
family. No sooner had he finished a portrait of Mrs. Langtry 
( tc The Jersey Lily "), then in the zenith of her beauty, than 

* The mother of these two fair-haired boys was a former model. She sat 
to Millais for the figure in " The White Cockade." 


his second son, George, was taken seriously ill. While 
keeping his terms at Cambridge he contracted typhoid fever, 
and being a very keen sportsman he so far neglected his 
health as to go out snipe-shooting while still under medical 
care. A chill ensued, followed by consumption, and in August 
he passed away at Bowerswell at the age of nineteen. It 
was a terrible blow to my parents all the heavier as he was 
now old enough to be a companion to my father during his 
autumn holiday, and many a happy day had they spent 
together with rod and gun. 

Never dreaming that his end was so near, they had taken 
him with them to Scotland, for which they started earlier 
than usual this year, having secured a little house called 
Dhivack, situated in the heart of the Inverness-shire moun 
tains, about eight miles north of Loch Ness and the village 
of Drumnadrochit a lovely place belonging to Mr. Arthur 
Lewis and tenanted for several years by John Phillip, R. A. 

For some weeks after this my father was too depressed in 
spirit either to work or to play ; and it was not till the end 
of September that he plucked up courage to go to some of 
the deer-drives at Balmacaan, organised by the late Earl 
of Seafield. Occasionally, too, he trolled for big trout in 
Loch Ness, where the gloomy grandeur of the ruined Castle 
Urquhart "the tower of strength which stood four-square 
to all the winds of heaven" seemed to echo the sentiments 
of his own sad heart, and presently he determined to paint it. 

If (as I think) the picture must be admitted a failure, it, 
must be remembered that it was painted only as a distraction 
from the sorrowful thoughts of a man bowed down with 


The new house Millais' delight in Kensington Gardens He receives, in Paris, 
the Gold " Mddaille d'Honneur " Is likewise created an Ofncier du Legion 
d'Honneur Sir Edgar Boehm's letter on the Paris Exhibition Letter from 
Monsieur mile Bayard French recognition of British Art Notes by Pro 
fessor Herkomer Mr. Frith, R.A., on Paris artists and studios Millais and 
Frith are painted for Gambarfs house Sarah Bernhardt Invitation from 
the Queen of Spain Albert Gray's notes on Millais' visit to Holland His 
admiration for Rembrandt and Franz-Hals Paul Potter's Bull," a poor 
production " Barry Lyndon " Gladstone His portrait of 1879 sir 
Edward Poynter on this picture It is presented to the nation Letter from 
Mr. Gladstone to the author Alcyone Stepney " Cherry Ripe " Appreci 
ations from distant lands Princess Elizabeth Sophie Millais sits for the 

picture Lines on Princess Elizabeth Eastwood Thomas T Millais a 

D. C. L. of Oxford John Bright Millais paints his own portrait for the Uffizzi 
Gallery Miss Beatrice Buckstone Letter from Sir William Richmond 
The Millais Exhibition, iSSi Letters from artists Lord Beaconsfield 
Letters from him His very last letter His death Autograph letter from 
the Queen Millais paints, for Her Majesty, a small replica of Lord Beacons- 
field's portrait. 

THE house in Palace Gate being now finished and ready 
for occupation, Millais was glad to leave Cromwell 
Place in 1878 and take possession of his new and more 
commodious home. Writing of it in 1885, Mr. W. Arm 
strong says: 

" Before the visitor puts his hand on the bell he will 
stand a moment to examine the home Sir John has raised 
for himself. It is characteristic of the man. None of the 
thought-out quaintness of the Anglo-Dutch revival, but a 
great plain square house, with an excrescence here and there 
where demanded by convenience. The ornamental details 
are Renaissance of a rather severe type, the few columns 
introduced being Roman, Doric, and Ionic. From the side 
towards the park the most conspicuous thing is the great 
studio window. The whole of this fa9ade is rather shape 
less, no doubt because it was thought that the open ground 



to the north would be soon occupied by masking houses. 
But the main front is an excellent piece of design, especially 
in the details. The credit for the work has often been given 
to Sir John Millais himself, but as a fact he did no more 
than sketch out a general notion of what he wanted for the 
use of Mr. Philip Hardwick, the responsible architect. 

" The hall is a room about five-and-thirty feet square, 
with a marble pavement and dado. It is divided into parts 
by white marble columns, beyond which the wide staircase 
rises in three flights to the first floor. The white marble 
gives the keynote to the decoration both of hall and stair 
case ; except' that the doors, which open all around, are of 
dark polished mahogany, the whole is as high in tone as 
London air will let it be. The ornaments are a few busts 
on gaineS) and the general effect is that of a Genoese 
palazzo. To the right of the hall is the morning-room, 
and the walls of both are almost hidden under etched, en 
graved, and photographed reproductions of Sir John Millais' 

"On the first floor landing we find the famous fountain 
with Boehm's black marble sea lion. Behind the fountain 
hangs a piece of tapestry, and on either flank stand busts." 

On the right of the landing is the large dining-room hung 
with Millais' own works, and two enormous pier-glasses, 
whose carved frames are attributed to John of Bologna; on 
two other sides are drawing-rooms, and on the fourth is his 
studio. " This," says Mr. Armstrong, " is a room about forty 
feet long by twenty-five wide and twenty high. It is dis 
tinguished from most of the studios lately built in London 
by its simplicity. There are no cunningly-devised corners, 
or galleries, or ingle-nooks, or window-seats ; the severity 
of Mr. Hardwick's architecture prevails here as in all the 
rest. The only ornaments are a few oak pilasters running 
up to the cove of the ceiling, and the finely-proportioned 
mantelpiece. For an active and popular painter a large 
studio is a necessity, and even this spacious room Sir John 
finds none too large." 

That is quite true : space meant much to Millais. He 
liked to see his work, whatever it might be, from all points 
of view, and to walk backwards and forwards in front of 
it, studying it under all lights. The floor was of parquet; 
and it amused him to notice, as he often did, young visitors 
looking at it instead of the pictures, for he knew that their 

By permission of Thos. Agnew and Sons 



thoughts were tending rather to the worship of Terpsichore 
than that of Pallas Athenae. u \Vhat a lovely room for a 
dance ! " was commonly the first exclamation. And in truth 
it was. It was lit by electricity, and on three of the walls 
hung Italian tapestries. In the left-hand corner was the 
bureau, and near it a table covered with the artist's painting 
materials. In the centre stood the dais for his models, and 
facing it, at the end of the room, was the large canvas of 
" Time clipping the Wings of Love," painted by Vandyke, 
and purchased by Millais at the Blenheim sale. 

In a word, the house was all that he desired; but un 
fortunately there was no garden, and the intervention of 
Thorny Lodge deprived him of an uninterrupted view of 
Kensington Gardens, in which he delighted to stroll, espe 
cially in the early mornings, when the chestnuts and almond 
trees were coming into bloom. " After all, I am but a few 
steps from the country," he used to say. " There are few 
parks in England more beautiful than these gardens. I could 
paint some good landscapes here." To this extent he was 
a thorough cockne}', though he could never bring himself 
to say, with the Iron Duke, " London is the best place in 
the world to live in for half the year, and I don't know any 
better for the other six months." 

In his younger days he was not too proud to hire a boat 
and have a good row on the Serpentine, and in later life he 
would often spend an hour leaning over the railings of the 
ornithological enclosure, watching the ducks, wood-pigeons, 
and peacocks displaying themselves. Any little bit of natural 
history so near at hand delighted him, and great was his joy 
one morning when he discovered a couple of pheasants in the 
shrubberies near Rotten Row. "There's more game here 
than at Craig Vinian," he said, with a twinkle in his eye, 
Craig Vinian being a shooting he had rented where the sport 
was very poor. 

Though himself no gardener, he was, as might be expected 
of the painter of " Ophelia," fond of everything that grew and 
flowered. Of a solitary bed of lilies of the valley which 
raised their heads amidst the London smuts in our back 
courtyard he was inordinately proud; and a vine that climbed 
over the back of the house, and in summer led its dainty 
tendrils through the open windows, he came to regard with 
almost the scientific interest of such horticulturists as Pope 
and Shenstone. 

II 7 


Apropos <& his love for Kensington Gardens, Miss Jamieson, 
my mother's cousin, favours me with a pathetic reminiscence. 
She says : " The last walk I ever had with him was about 
a fortnight before he was finally restricted to the house. It 
was late in the afternoon of a spring day, the sun shining 
brightly and a cold east wind. He told me he would take 
and show me something beautiful. We went into the Gardens 
to a spot where there was a magnificent magnolia in full 
blossom. This was what he wished to show. He could not 
speak above a whisper, but pointed constantly with his stick 
to these flowers and the different spring blossoms that he 
loved so well, making his usual remark of the delight it was 
to have such gardens so near at hand to walk in. I always 
associate them with him now." 

From the Art point of view, it was a propitious year for 
Millais, this Annus Domini 1878. He had sent to the Inter 
national Art Exhibition at Paris several important works, 
including "Chill October," "A Yeoman of the Guard," 
"Madame Bischoffsheim," "The Three Miss Armstrongs," 
and " The Bride of Lammermoor " ; and malgre the prejudice 
of the French Academy against foreign Art, especially British, 
had won for his exhibits their highest prize, the gold medaille 

Determined, too, to mark still more emphatically their 
appreciation of his talent, the French conferred upon him, 
along with Sir Alma Tadema, the honour of an officer of the 
Legion dhonneur. To Professor Herkomer was also awarded 
the gold medal of the Academy, and great joy was it to them 
all not only to find their works placed on a level with those 
of Meissonnier, Gerome, Bonnat, and other distinguished 
French artists, but to feel that they had helped to raise 
English Art and English artists to a position never before 
attained in the land of the Gaul. 

Mr. Frith, R.A., was the first to tell Millais the good news. 
Referring to the medaille dhonneur, he writes : "I con 
gratulate you on your well-deserved success, and I don't 
believe there is an artist in England who, after swearing 
he ought to have had it himself, will begrudge you the 

From Boehm, too, the famous sculptor, and from M. Emile 
Bayard, editor of the Journal Officiel, came, as will be seen, 
most appreciative letters. 

"EFFIE DEANS." 1877 
By permission of Tkos. Agnew and So7t$ 


From Mr. J. E. Boehm. 


"Paris, le 30 Avril, 1878. 

" My DEAR MILLAIS, I cannot resist to congratulate you 
upon the splendid effect which your pictures make in "the 
exhibition here. We certainly will be very pleased when you 
come over to see them. They are the first which strike one 
most forcibly on entering the first room of the English Art 
Department, where they almost occupy the whole room. 
On the left-hand side the old mariner [Trelawny] looks quite 
superb. Madame Bischoffsheim seems to walk out of the 
frame, and some of the French artists I saw, who peeped 
in, are tremendously struck with your work. Altogether 
British painters are splendidly represented, and everyone 
must feel proud and glad at the judicious selection. The 
exhibition is far from being finished, and is the biggest and 
grandest thing of the kind that ever was made. It gives me 
the impression of being the last that ever will be. It covers 
miles on both sides of the Seine. No flooring was done yet 
(yesterday), and the most prominent object in the industrial 
part are packing-cases and straw. The light for sculpture is 
bad, though my rearing cart-horse looks very well in the 
open air, and Leighton's figure fine, and makes a sensation. 

" I think you ought to have no misgivings about your very 
fine work ; light, arrangement, everything most satisfactory ; 
so forgive this long rigmarole. I could not help it. 

" Ever yours sincerely, 

u J. E. BOEHM." 

From M. Emile Bayard. 

"PARIS, 14 Mai, 1878. 

" MONSIEUR ET MAITRE, J'ai re9u de M. Hodgkinson une 
lettre charmante dans laquelle il m'autorise a reproduire votre 
c Garde Royal.' Je lui ecris pour le remercier. 

" Quel autre tableau de vous pourrais-je obtenir des pro- 
prietaires? Si je pouvais avoir les Montagnes d'Ecosse par 
exemple, superbe paysage, je serais bien heureux. Enfin, 
mon cher Maitre, si vous voulez bien tre assez bon pour 
m'indiquer vous meme comment je dois faire pour obtenir une 
' deuxieme oeuvre, vous m'aurez aide a ma besogne qui est de 
populariser en France votre glorieux nom et d'apprendre au 


public ce que tous les artistes savent dej&, & savoir quel 
puissant peintre vous etes. 

" Veuillez agreer, Monsieur et Maitre, Tassurance de mon 
profound respect. 

" Votre humble^serviteur, 


" du Journal Officiel? 

Rather different this from the tone of M. Theophile 
Gautier in 1855, when he laughed to scorn the works of the 
Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood as "eccentricities only to be 
found in Albion." Equally significant, too, are the observa 
tions of M. Duranty, who, writing this year (1878) in one of 
the French reviews, is glad to notice the immense advance in 
English Art since 1855. In a most interesting article he 
traces the origin of the English school to Holland, "an 
origin of parentage, but not of imitation. The same houses, 
the same sky, the same manners, the same maritime life, the 
same religious tendencies, are found in England and the 
Netherlands. Since 1855 the influence of French and Italian 
Art has produced its effect, though the national character of 
the school is little altered. Through all the differences of 
schools and tendencies the English eye has remained the 
same." The school of Mr. Ruskin and the Pre-Raphaelites 
is, he thinks, on the wane. " Mr. Millais especially, by the 
force of his artistic intuitions, and influenced somewhat by 
Baron Leys and M. Jules Breton, has been able to emanci 
pate himself from most of the fetters which trammelled him 
in his earlier career. Minute Pre-Raphaelism has disap 
peared, but the bold and vigorous hand, the penetrating eye 
of 1855, are more vigorous and penetrating in 1878. The 
variety of his work is splendid, ranging from exact minute 
ness to the greatest effects, and is suffused with the magic of 
the most dreamy and pensive charm. Millais is one of the 
men of the Art of the nineteenth century." 

With the usual French aptitude to generalise, M. Duranty 
cleverly sums up the characters of the various continental and 
insular schools in this wise : " German painting," he says, " is 
sober, restrained, reflective, grave, sometimes profound, some 
times smiling ; but it seems to bear the weight of a grey sky 
and to reflect the cares of a laborious life on a hard and 
ungrateful soil. Russian Art has a bizarre and local flavour. 
Denmark is provincial. Sweden is French. Norway is 
German. Holland is English, without English distinction. 

By permission of the Fine Art Society 

i8 7 s] HIS MODESTY 105 

Belgian Art is material. Southern Germany bursts forth 
into an explosion of colour which has the tone of copper, a 
noisy fanfare sounded to attract attention. In Switzerland 
and in Greece, as in the small states of the north, Art draws 
its inspiration either from France or Germany. Italy fer 
ments, but from the confusion will flow a clear and pleasant 
stream. Spain and Italy are alike. Above all towers Eng 
lish Art, original, delicate, scrupulously true, expressive, full 
of a lofty intellectual 'dandyism,' full of sensitiveness, grace, 
and refined tenderness, full of historical sentiment which 
joins modern things to the lofty accents and strong attractions 
of the past; an art of penetration, elegance, and poetry, 
absolutely bound up with the genius of the nation ; an art 
in which melancholy is joined to pleasure, and singularity to 
precise reality." 

October was the month fixed for the distribution of the 
prizes ; and, in compliance with an official notice, Millais 
and Herkomer hastened to Paris to receive their medals 
in person. What passed is best described by Professor 
Herkomer, who kindly writes to me: u It has always been 
a proud moment in my career when I obtained one of the 
great medals of honour in Paris (1878) with the splendid 
painter, your father, whose superb art raised the status of 
English Art I was at that time not even an Associate of 
the Royal Academy. I remember well, when we went to 
Paris to receive our medals, the joy he felt in the great pomp 
that surrounded the event of the distribution of medals to 
all nations. I remember his appreciation of the way in 
which France, above all countries in the world, appreciated 
the Fine Arts, which it exemplified by placing the flag that 
headed the Fine Art Section in the one place of honour, 
above the throne of the President of the Republic. 

" As it happened, we did not have to go up the great steps 
to receive our medals singly, greatly to your father's relief. 
Sir Cunliffe Owen received them all in a basket, and I could 
not get your father to ask him, as he passed us, for our 
medals. He was too modest and shy, but he pushed me on, 
and said, ' No ; you ask, you ask ! ' It was a great contrast, 
this great man in his modesty, to my unhesitating young 
impudence, because / did not hesitate to ask for them, and, 
what is more, got them. Thus we went home with our 
medals in our pockets, while the others had to wait weeks, 
until the red-tape arrangements had been officially carried out. 


" I can say no more than that my whole life was wrapped 
in admiration of his art, and to know him was to love him." 

While in Paris Millais made the acquaintance, and visited 
the studios, of most of the distinguished French artists, 
notably Gerome and Meissonnier, Gambart, the picture- 
dealer, who had made a fortune, kindly acting as his 

An amusing account of this visit is given by Frith 
in his Reminiscences. He says : " Most of the principal 
British painters were well represented ; and the French 
artists (to their great surprise, it is said) found that there 
was really a school of Art in England worthy the name. I 
went to \Paris with two friends, one of whom was Millais, 
and we \were received very graciously by many of the 
French painters ; Millais, of course, carrying away, as he 


B * ' * j <j j i 

the lion's share of applause. We were not 

at the kindness of our reception ; but the houses 

palaces Would be the better name in which some of the 
artists lived surprised me very much. Millais and Leighton 
are pretty decently lodged ; but Detaille and Meissonnier out 
strip them in splendour. I had never seen either of these 
gentlemen before, and when I was introduced to a demon 
strative little man as brisk as a boy of twenty attired 
in black dress trousers and a blue silk blouse, open in front, 
disclosing a bright red shirt, a long grey beard falling 
over the latter as M. Meissonnier, I had an example before 
me of the truth of the saying, that big souls often locate 
themselves in small bodies. Detaille is a soldierly looking 
man, reminding one of the figures he draws so well; but 
his house! and his bed! the latter a marvellous structure 
we had a sight of it from his studio : black and gold 
splendour I told him I should be afraid to sleep in it. 

" We met our old friend Gambart in Paris, with whom 
was De Keyser, the head of the Academy at Antwerp. He 
had come to Paris mainly to paint portraits of Millais and 
my humble self, for introduction into a large composition 
to be executed by him on the walls of Gambart's house 
at Nice. We take our place in a group of contemporary 

IC Sarah Bernhardt, actress, sculptor, and painter, is a 
friend of Mr. Gambart's, and as we were desirous of an 
introduction to a person so celebrated, a day was fixed for 

i8 7 8] REMINISCENCES 107 

our visit. We were admitted through large gates into a 
garden, with little tables dotted about Carpeted steps led 
up to the chief entrance ; we passed it, and found ourselves 
in a large hall, furnished with magnificence in the shape 
of sculpture, armour, clocks, etc. Only a rapid glance 
was possible, as we were ushered immediately into the 
studio many more sculptures in various states of incom 
pleteness, huge tropical plants, and unfinished pictures 
and as we entered, a boy dressed in white, with yellow 
hair, sprang from a sofa and greeted us warmly. This seem 
ing boy was Miss Sarah Bernhardt, whose masculine attire 
was assumed for the convenience it afforded for the practice 
of the Art she loves far more than that in which she is 
famous. She made the astounding declaration to me that 
she hated acting, and would rather succeed in painting or 
sculpture, or both, than in any other earthly calling. 

" Of her painting I cannot speak, for I saw no completed 
work ; but her sculpture surprised us all, and left little doubt 
that if she devoted herself entirely to that Art, she would 
take a high place amongst its professors." 

Of Millais' previous travels under the temptation of foreign 
Art Mr. Albert Gray sends me the following notes : 

" Millais was one of those who have no delight in travel, 
or, rather, of those to whom the irksomeness of catching 
trains, of being immured in trains, and of bundling into and 
out of hotels, appears in the light of a prohibitive price. 
The conditions to which the genuine tourist with more or less 
contentment resigns himself frequently supplied him with a 
final argument against a trip which would have comprised 
some much-desired sights. 

" He knew the principal galleries of Italy, and I believe 
had been to Dresden. The distance of Vienna and St. 
Petersburg put them out of the question for him. Paris he 
was familiar with. For many years he had meditated Spain, 
and could have gone there on the most favoured tourist 
terms, when his friend Sir Clare Ford was minister at 
Madrid. It was a lasting regret with him not to have seen 
his favourite Velasquez at the Prado. 

" There remained Holland ; and Holland was more 
accessible. As the Whitsuntide of 1875 approached his 
courage was screwed to the sticking-point, and he embarked 
at Queensborough with his sister-in-law Mrs. Stibbard, G. D. 
Stibbard, and myself. Having been twice to Holland, I was 


appointed courier. Our camp was pitched successfully at 
the Hague and Amsterdam, from which centres all things 
possible in a nine or ten days' trip can be done without the 
daily movement of baggage. 

"The gallery at the Hague gave him genuine pleasure. 
Here for the first time he saw the larger works of Rembrandt, 
and he returned again and again to ' The Lesson in 
Anatomy. 5 His method of viewing a gallery would seem 
remarkable to the ordinary tourist. He never looked inside 
a guide-book or catalogue, though he was sometimes glad to 
have his opinions corroborated. There were, of course, but 
few high-class works the authorship of which he could not 
fix at a glance. He would thus enter a room, and after a 
rapid survey concentrate his attention on so much as seemed 
to him really 'great work.' Ver Meer, of Delft, was almost 
new to him, the fresh examples of De Hooch maintained his 
opinion of that skilled craftsman ; while Paul Potter's ' Bull ' 
left him cold. 

" At the Mauritzhuis we fell in with Mr. W. P. Frith, R.A., 
and the two Academicians went through the rooms together. 

"The divergent aims and interests of the two men dis 
played themselves forthwith. Millais, grasping Frith's arm 
with one hand and pointing with the other, would eagerly 
proclaim the triumphs of Rembrandt or Franz Hals; while 
Frith, wondering how his friend 'could admire paint laid 
on with a palette-knife,' would strive to detain him before a 
Metsu or a Gerard Dow. 

" Haarlem and Leiden, Delft and Dordrecht were all 
visited from the Hague. Millais pronounced the sculpture 
of the monument of William the Silent at Delft to be quite 
first-rate, and thought the choir-rstalls at Dordrecht equal to 
the finest Italian work. The corporation pieces of Hals at 
Haarlem filled him with unbounded enthusiasm, and it was 
here that he conceived the purpose of similarly treating 
the Yeomen of the Guard, a purpose which he sadly aban 
doned after making one or two sketches for the group and 
finishing the well-known single figure now in the National 

" In those days the pictures of Amsterdam were much less 
well seen than at present. The collections were divided, and 
the big pictures shown in insufficient space. Millais was 
disappointed with the ' Night Watch,' but was unstinted in 
his admiration of the other large Rembrandts. The revela- 


tion of Amsterdam to him was, however, Van der Heist's 
1 Banquet of the Arquebusiers/ For pure painting, grandeur 
of style and colour, he considered it the finest work of the 
kind in the world ; and he was pleased to be reminded that 
Sir Joshua Reynolds had entertained a similarly high estimate 
of this monumental canvas. It must not, however, be sup 
posed that in his < Valhalla ' Van der Heist would have been 
assigned a place quite near Rembrandt 

" Millais had had a letter of introduction to the principal 
print-seller of Amsterdam, who received him with great dis 
tinction. I well remember among the gentleman's first 
inquiries as to Millais' impressions of Dutch Art was one put 
in a loud staccato, 'And what do you think of Ferdinand 
Bol?' Often afterwards did Millais repeat the question, 
giving the fullest rotundity to the word Bol." 

No sooner had he returned to England than he was hon 
oured with an invitation from the Queen of Spain to visit her 
at Madrid. The opportunity \vas most tempting, for he had 
long desired to see Madrid, and would probably have done so 
ere this, but for his rooted aversion to travelling and a lurk 
ing fear that the wealth of colour and the picturesqueness of 
the country and its inhabitants might tend to wean him from 
his love, of English subjects, and so destroy the national 
character of his Art. John Phillip's admirable paintings 
were in themselves a stimulus in that direction ; Millais had 
friends, too, there intimate friends in Madrazzo and other 
eminent artists and was himself a member of the Madrid 
Academy ; and most of all was he anxious to see and study 
for himself the unique collection of Velasquez' pictures that 
Madrid alone can boast. But now he was for the moment 
out of heart. After the excitement of his Paris visit the 
loss of his son came back upon him with renewed force, 
compelling him, however reluctantly, to decline the royal 
invitation a circumstance that I fancy he regretted in after 

* It was in 1890, when Mr. Charles Stuart Wortley and his wife were at Madrid 
for an International Conference, to which Mr. Stuart Wortley was sent as Principal 
Delegate for the Government, that an invitation to Millais to come to Madrid was 
addressed personally to my sister by Queen Christina. This verbal invitation was 
followed by a more formal one transmitted through our old and much-beloved 
friend Sir Clare Ford, the British Minister at the Court of Spain, who, writing 
to Lady Millais, says, " Millais can talk about it, and make his arrangements to 
come and see the' Velasquez pictures whenever he likes. I shall give Apelles a 
Royal (Academician) Welcome" Owing to ill-health, however, he was forced to 
decline this second invitation. 


By this time (after his visit to Paris) he had quite given 
up black-and-white work ; but, at the special request of 
Messrs. Smith and Elder, he made four drawings for the 
edition de luxe of Thackeray's " Barry Lyndon," the wood 
cuts of which, though very well done, do but scant justice to 
the originals. 

Now for the first time Mr. Gladstone was to sit to him 
for his portrait, an event he looked forward to with interest 
as affording an opportunity for seeing something of the inner 
man of the great Liberal leader who was shortly to set 
Midlothian aflame with his marvellous oratory. Gladstone, 
he felt sure, would talk ; and no one knew better than himself 
how to draw a man out while apparently absorbed in painting 
his portrait. 

It was in 1879 that this sitting took place, and everything 
came off as anticipated. Gladstone proved to be not only an 
ideal sitter, but a most entertaining and charming companion. 
Instead of keeping silence, as other great men are apt to 
do, in face of a struggle such as that in which he was so 
soon to engage, he entered freely into conversation on the 
various topics of the day ; and when, a little later, we were 
all assembled at lunch, he astonished us beyond measure by 
the extent of his learning on subjects commonly attractive 
only to the specialist His reading and his memory were 
alike amazing. To my father he talked eagerly about the 
early Italian and Florentine painters, betraying an intimate 
knowledge of the men, the times they lived in, their works, 
and where these were now to be found. Then, as might 
happen, the latest bon mot from the clubs would suddenly 
flash across his mind, or we should be treated to a disquisition 
on fish and the art of capturing them ; or, finding that my 
mother was interested in early Scottish history (a subject 
of which he had made a special study) he would pour forth 
to her from the founts of his knowledge, setting her right 
in the pleasantest manner on various points of interest. 
Music, sport, science, art were all taken up in turn, as he 
addressed himself to one or other of us; and singularly 
winning was the deferential tone he assumed, even when 
speaking to the youngest man at the table. A red-hot Tory 
who was dying to tackle him on a leading political topic was 
so carried away with the charm of his conversation that he 
left the room without even mentioning the subject. 

As to the portrait itself I leave other people to speak. 

By permission of Sir diaries Tennant 


Mr. Spielmann says of it: u : When Millais was painting 
this portrait,' said a lady, an intimate friend of the ex-Pre 
mier, ' Mr. Gladstone was thinking what a terrible sin would 
be committed if England was to go to war for the Turks. 1 
These words, set on record by Sir Wemyss Reid, remind 
one that it was in the midst of the Bulgarian horrors agita 
tion that Mr. Gladstone found time to give sittings to the 
artist for the first of the series of portraits he made of him. 
He said it was most enjoyable to sit to Millais, 4 not because 
he talks ; but to see him at his work is a delight, for the way 
he throws his heart and soul into it/ The picture shows 
Mr. Gladstone not in a combative, but in one of his tenderer 
and more sympathetic moods, when pity rather than fight 
seems to fill his mind. It is a superb work, as a portrait 
pure and simple, equal to nearly anything Millais ever did, 
except perhaps the Tennyson. It was painted for the Duke 
of Westminster, and then passed into the collection of Sir 
Charles Tennant" 

The history of this change of ownership is well known. 
As remarked in a recent notice in one of the daily papers, 
the portrait " is almost a piece of politics, as well as a 
work of art. It was painted at the time of the Bulgarian 
agitation for the Duke of Westminster, then, as now, one of 
the warmest friends of the oppressed nationalities in the 
East. When Mr. Gladstone took up the cause of an 
oppressed nationality nearer home, and advocated Home 
Rule for Ireland, the Duke of Westminster became politi 
cally and personally estranged. He could not endure, it was 
said, even to see Mr. Gladstone's portrait facing him on his 
walls. However this may be, he certainly sold it to Sir 
Charles Tennant 1 "' Happily, any personal ^ estrangement 
there was, was healed before Mr. Gladstone's death ; and 
during his retirement and illness at Hawarden the Duke of 
Westminster was one of the most kindly and attentive of 

Through the generosity of Sir Charles Tennant, the 
picture is now the property of the nation, as foreshadowed in 
a graceful speech by Sir Edward Poynter, P. R. A., at the 
Academy banquet in May, 1898. " In reviewing the events 
of the past year, 11 he said, " I must make more than a passing 
mention of that brilliant exhibition of the works of our late 
President, Sir John Millais, which was held in these rooms 
during the past winter. No one could see that great display 


without astonishment at the range and variety of the genius 
of our great painter. To characterise the nature of his 
genius would be as out of place now 7 as to give a list of his 
prominent works ; but, if there was a point on which he \vas 
supreme, it was in that great series of portraits, ot which, 
perhaps, the culmination is the \vell-known noble presentation 
of Mr. Gladstone, unrivalled since the days of Rembrandt 
and Velasquez in its rendering of the mind and spirit of 
the man. It is with the pleasure and satisfaction which 
will be shared by everyone present that I am enabled to 
announce to you that that portrait will eventually find a 
place in our national collection. The present owner, 
Sir Charles Tennant, a trustee of the National Gallery, 
has authorised me to state that he intends to give it to 
the nation, to be placed in Trafalgar Square, where it will 
stand as a monument to the genius of the artist, to the 
greatness of the statesman, and to the liberality of the 

But perhaps of even greater interest, now that Mr. Glad 
stone is no longer amongst us, is the letter he was good 
enough to write to me but a few months before the shadow 
of death began to fall upon his path. 

From Mr. Gladstone. 


' ' November tfh, 1897. 

" DEAR J. G. MILLAIS, The subject on which you have 
addressed me is, I can assure you, one of much interest to 
me as well as to yourself ; but the state of my health at the 
moment, as w r ell as my declining years (an objection not 
likely to mend with time), obliges me to be brief in my 
answer to your letter. 

tt It was at his own suggestion, and for his own account, 
that he undertook to paint me, while I rather endeavoured 
to dissuade him from wasting his labour on an unpromising 
subject. He, however, persisted. I was at once struck with 
a characteristic which seemed to me to mark him off from all 
other artists (and they have in my long life been many) to 
whom I have sat. It was the intensity with which he 
worked, and which, so far as I may judge, I have never 
seen equalled. 

By permission of Thos. Agnew and Sons 


" It has always excited my surprise that many artists are 
able to paint portraits, and likewise to hold copious con 
versations with their sitters. 

" I have had interesting conversations with your father, 
but not to any large extent during the sittings. One is 
tempted to fear that the common practice must entail a 
division of energy unfavourable to the work; for portrait- 
painting in good hands is surely not only a work, but a very 
arduous work. 

" The result of your father's practice was that, of all the 
painters I have ever sat to, he took the fewest sittings. 
This, as well as his success, was due, I think, to the extra 
ordinary concentration with which he laboured. He had no 
energies to spare; and no wonder, when we see \vhat energies 
he put into his pictures. 

" Although I think the highly-finished portrait in the pos 
session of Sir Charles Tennant was completed upon sittings 
not amounting to five hours, I beg you to understand that 
their comparative brevity was not owing to impatience on 
my part, for, in truth, I never felt any. He always sent me 

" It appeared to me impossible to prolong such labour as 
his over a continuous series of hours, and I think he very 
judiciously gave himself, whether sometimes or habitually, 
some recreation or change after the sittings. Upon the 
whole I felt an unusual interest in the work, which extended, 
I can assure you, to the man. I rejoice in the security as 
well as the extent of his well-earned fame. 

" Believe me, 

" Very faithfully yours, 


Millais was in great form this year (1879), but, for the 
first time for some years past, he produced no landscape. 
His time was devoted exclusively to portraits and figure 
subjects, the former including, besides Mr. Gladstone's, 
portraits of Mrs. Arthur Kennard, Mrs. Jopling, Mrs. Bed- 
dington, Mrs. Stibbard, and Miss Alcyone Stepney, and 
later on the well-known " Cherry Ripe " and " Princess 

The child Alcyone was a difficult little bird to catch. She 
could only be taken on the wing, for, when perched on the 




dais, she was so frightened that there was nothing for it but 
to take her down again, give her some flowers to play with, 
and let her run about the studio at her own sweet will. 
Whatever details were wanted had to be got by catching her 
up now and then, and holding her for a few minutes at a 
time ; and in this way a likeness was secured. 


" Cherry Ripe " was the first of the many beautiful child 
pictures that came from Millais' easel during this and the 
next fifteen years, and quite amazing was the hold it took 
upon the public fancy. Miss Blanche Barette, a professional 
model, was said to have sat for the figure ; but, in fact, the 
little model was Miss Edie Ramage, now Madame Francisco 
de Paula Ossorio, a niece of Mr. Thomas, editor of the 
Graphic. She used to come to the studio accompanied by 
her mother, who was somewhat shy and nervous; and it 

"CHERRY RIPE." 1879 
By permission of Mr, Tfiomas McLean 

i379] "CHERRY RIPE" 121 

often amused my father to see how completely the little girl 
did the honours, and tried to put her parent at her ease, 
bringing her a chair, and occasionally answering for her when 
spoken to.* 

Mr. Spielmann has an interesting note on this subject, of 
which I am glad to avail myself. u Miss Edie Ramage," he 
says, " was the belle of the fancy dress ball given by the Graphic 
in the year the work was produced. She impersonated Sir 
Joshua Reynolds' c Penelope Booth by/ and was thought to 
be so charming that she was again dressed in the character 
and carried off to the artist's studio. He was so delighted 
with his little model that it was agreed upon the spot that he 
should paint a portrait of the child, and that the price should 
be a thousand guineas. ... So popular was the picture, it is 
said, that of the coloured reproduction which appeared in the 
Graphic in 1880 600,000 copies were sold, and that had the 
unsatisfied orders been met the issue would have reached a 
million ; indeed, the publisher had to return several thousand 
pounds in cash and sustain actions at law for damages for 

" The picture, painted with a sureness of touch and rich 
ness of palette to be found only in Sir John's best work, with 
a setting singularly felicitous in design, seems to be a good 
deal darker than it was. More than any other of his pictures 
it contains a dash of that espilglerie which is one of the 
principal charms of Sir Joshua's representations of fascinat 
ing childhood. 

It was engraved by Samuel Cousins, whose wonderful 
skill Millais rejoiced to notice in the following letter to my 
mother, dated November 7th, 1881 : " You will be glad to 
hear that yesterday I saw at Mr. Cousins' his engraving of 
4 Cherry Ripe,' and that it is simply by far the most enchant 
ing work which has ever been done from any of my pictures. 
MacLean, who published it, has just been here, and acknow 
ledges its success already as unbounded, and I have pro 
mised to paint him a pendant. ... I have also Herkomer's 
engraving of Lord Beaconsfield, which is excellent." 

Thanks to the engraver's and woodcutter's art, " Cherry 
Ripe " found its way into the remotest parts of the English- 
speaking world, and everywhere that sweet presentment of 
English childhood won the hearts of the people. From 

* " Cherry Ripe " and her husband escaped with difficulty from Manila during 
the Spanish- American War, 1898. 


Australian miners, Canadian backwoodsmen, South African 
trekkers, and all sorts and conditions of colonial residents, 
came to the artist letters of warmest congratulation, some of 
which stirred his heart by the deep emotion they expressed. 
Nor were letters always enough to convey the sentiments of 
the writers ; they must needs break forth into poetry. Wit 
ness the following, dated from " Athole Bank, Hamilton, 
Ontario, Canada, January ist, 1882: 

" An humble Cannok on the shores 

Of great Ontario's lake, 
Who matchless ' Cherry Ripe 7 adores, 
The liberty would take 

" To throw across the wintry sea 

A warm and grateful cheer 

To glorious Millais, and may he 

Enjoy a good New Year ! " 

On the back of this is written : 

" SIR, Though an obscure backwoodsman like myself 
can hardly expect to receive even an echo to the foregoing 
humble greeting (pardonable, I trust, at this festive season), I 
shall at least have given myself the satisfaction of expressing 
some little portion of the gratitude of Canadians towards one 
who has done so much to brighten the homes of the Anglo- 
Saxon race all over the world with his wonderful creations. 
" I have the honour to be, 

" Yours most respectfully, 


" Princess Elizabeth " was painted as a companion picture 
to the "Princes in the Tower," and partakes of the same 
pathetic character. It is happily described by Spiel mann 
as " one of Millais' tenderest and most pathetic pictures of 
child-life. The poor little princess is represented, before 
she was removed to Carisbrooke Castle to die, composino- 
her touching letter to the Parliamentary Commissioners', 
begging that her own loved servants should not be taken 
from -her as was ordered, and that she might be allowed 
to join her sister, the Princess of Orange. In accordance 
with her request, the more cruel policy was reversed ; her 
servants were left to her, but soon afterwards, on September 
8th, 1650, this little daughter of Charles I., who had spent 
more than half her brief life of fifteen years in prison, was 


released by death, ' with her pale cheek resting on the 
Holy Book.' 

"The exquisite rendering of the pathos of the subject, 
the beautiful realisation of the sweet, wistful face and en 
tirely characteristic and child-like pose, as well as the fine 
painting of the head, raise this picture far above the rank 
of genre or anecdote, and award it a dignified place as a 
work of history." 

My sister Sophie, then a child of twelve, sat for the 
figure; but it was by the merest accident that she was 
selected. The subject had been for some time in my father's 
mind, but before attempting to give it form and shape, he 
must finish a picture he had commenced, combining a 
portrait of herself and another child. Sophie was to be 
presented full-face ; but one morning, while on her way to 
the studio, she had a nasty fall, that so disfigured one side 
of her face as to make it impossible to proceed with her 
portrait. A vacant canvas was, however, at hand, and also 
the dress Millais had procured for " Princess Elizabeth," and 
as he hated to lose time, he started at once upon the new 
picture, taking Sophie as his model instead of the profes 
sional he had intended to employ. 

A singular interest attaches to the magnificent wardrobe 
that appears in the background of the picture. It was once 
the property of that unfortunate monarch whose daughter 
is here depicted, and was used by him as a wardrobe. Of 
exquisite workmanship, and displaying on the panels two 
little images of solid silver, it was probably made about 
the time of Elizabeth. There is an engraving of it in the 
earliest known work on British furniture. Millais bought 
it from a dealer shortly after it had been taken from 
Theobald's, in whose stores it had rested for several cen 
turies, and to these stores, I believe, it was finally returned. 

The late Prince Albert Victor, who honoured me with 
his friendship when we were students together at Cambridge, 
was so taken with a proof engraving of this picture, pre 
sented to him by Her Majesty, that he would allow nothing 
else to hang on the walls of his dining-room. He told me 
he had the greatest affection for it, and should take it with 
him wherever he went. 

Elsewhere, too, the picture was highly popular, one of 
its most enthusiastic admirers being a young lady named 
Edith Eaton, then residing with her parents at Buffalo, 


U.S.A. On January ist, 1882, she was good enough to 
send to the artist a composition of her own, the grace of 
which entitles it, I think, to admission here. 


" Quaint little maid in the carven frame, 
Looking out from the pictured gloom 
Into the silent, shadowed room 
With eyes whose question is still the same, 

" An artist's brush with bold caprice 

Has caught you out from a century past, 
And on the canvas, pinioned fast. 
You are captive held in an endless peace. 

"The misty lights of those far-off days 
Still linger round you, it would seem, 
And, like the shadows of a dream, 
They struggle out from unknown space. 

"The surging tides of this mortal life 
That perfect calm can never mar ; 
But faintly, echoed from afar, 
You catch the sounds of the distant strife. 

" The flight of years, with careless ruth, 
Can never brush you with their wings. 
In Art, and Art alone, there springs 
The fountain of eternal youth." 

On the back of these lines, her mother writes : " It is 
hoped that Mr. Millais will excuse the liberty taken in 
sending these verses (written by a young girl) ; since it is 
ever grateful to the true artist to have proved an inspiration 
to others, even though so far away that * Art alone ' makes 
him known to them." 

The autumn of 1879 was spent at Eastwood, a charming 
house on the banks of the Tay, belonging to Mr. Athole 
MacGregor, and here Millais amused himself with his fishing 
on the Tay and the rough shooting of Craig Vinian. 

A great character was old Thomas T , our boatman 

at Eastwood. He was one of the old Highland mail-coach 
men, and used to entertain us with stories of the old days 
when he wielded the whip between Perth and Inverness ; 
the quaint and caustic character of his remarks, whether 
grave or gay, adding immensely to the force of whatever 
he said, as the following little anecdote may show. Mrs. 
X , then in the zenith of her fame as the most beautiful 

By permission of the Fine Art Society 


woman of her day, was staying with us, and spent a day 
on the river, watching my "father fish. The old boatman 
seemed much impressed with her charms, and next day 
Millais asked him what he thought of her. "\Veel," said 

T (always a rabid laudator temporis acti\ " A Ve seen 

the day when Missus T could ha' lickit her a to pot? Per 
haps she could she looked it but not exactly in the sense 

that her lord and master intended, for the worthy Mrs. T , 

who weighed some twenty stone, could hardly have been any 
thing but extremely ill-favoured, even in her most palmy days. 

More portraits awaited Millais' return to town. He had 
undertaken to paint (amongst others) Bishop Fraser, the Right 
Hon. John Bright, Principal Caird of Glasgow, Mr. D. 
Thwaites, Luther Holden, P.R.C.S., Mrs. Perugini, and Miss 
Evelyn Otway; and the moment- he reached home he set to 
work to fulfil the commissions. 

John Bright, by the way, was, like himself, a keen salmon- 
fisher, and in the previous autumn they had enjoyed the sport 
together at Dalguise as guests of Mr. Rupert Potter; for 
though Bright abhorred the idea of slaughter for the sake of 
sport, he held with certain scientists the comfortable doctrine 
that fish are insensible to pain ! 

^ During the^ winter other commissions came in, and along 
with them an invitation from Florence to add to the collection 
in the Uffizzi Gallery of portraits of artists painted by them 
selves. To do this he wheeled up close alongside of the 
canvas on which he was to paint, a huge looking-glass that 
always stood in the studio at Palace Gate, and in two or three 
days the whole painting was completed. " You see/' he said, 
"it is done very quickly; for as I know exactly when to keep 
still, I 'm a pretty good sitter." 

The two subject-pictures " Cuckoo " and " Diana Vernon " 
were also painted this year, the latter being really a portrait 
of the Hon. Caroline Roche. 

In 1880 came the gratifying intelligence that, in recognition 
of Millais' genius as an artist, the University of Oxford pro 
posed to confer upon him the distinction of D.C.L. The 
honour was, of course, accepted, and Millais gladly seized 
the opportunity for renewing his acquaintance with that 
delightful city under such pleasant auspices, and at the most 
charming time of the year. On the appointed day, however, 
the weather suddenly changed for the worse ; the sky was 
overcast, and no sooner had the procession to the theatre 


started than down came the rain in torrents, to the intense 
disgust of a famous mathematician, who had made so sure 
of a fine day that he neglected to provide himself with any 
protection against the storm. Millais flew to his relief; but 
so suddenly did he open his umbrella that the mathematical 
"trencher" was sent flying through the air, followed by the 
owner, who, gallantly charging into the crowd in his efforts to 
recover it, was unmercifully chaffed by sundry ribald students, 
who had assembled as usual to witness the show. 

The presentation of the D.C.L. degree always calls forth 
much good-humoured banter and nonsense from the giddy 
youth of the 'Varsity, and Millais of course came in for his 
share. On the conclusion of the Public Orator's eulogistic 
address in Latin, a bright youth quietly lowered down from 
the gallery a huge pot of Brunswick blacking, presumably as 
a delicate allusion to a certain picture whose name it recalled. 

About this time, to the great delight of Millais, a new and 
most charming model was discovered in the person of Miss 
Beatrice Buckstone, grand-daughter of the famous comedian 
J. B. Buckstone, and with the consent of her parents (for 
she was then but a child of 12 or 13) she sat for the three 
pictures, "Cinderella," " Caller Herrin," and "Sweetest Eyes 
\Yere Ever Seen." It was at St. James' Theatre, in the 
winter of 1880-81, that this happy discovery was made. One 
of my sisters, who happened to be at the theatre one evening 
when the child was playing in " Good Fortune " as a member 
of Mr. and Mrs. Kendal's company, was so struck with 
her beauty that she prevailed on my father to go and see her. 
He, too, was equally captivated, and at once wrote to her 
mother, asking leave for her to sit to him. This being 
granted, little Beatrice presently appeared in the studio, when 
we all agreed that never in our lives had we seen a more 
lovely child. Her face was simply perfect, both in form and 
colour, and nothing could be more charming than the contrast 
between her bright golden hair and those big, blue-grey Irish 
eyes that peeped at you from under the shade of the longest 
black lashes that ever adorned the human face. The pictures 
for which she sat in no way exaggerated her beauty; they 
were but portraits of her own sweet self. It seemed a pity 
that she should ever grow older; but she did, and in course 
of time became the wife of Mr. Walter Warren, who is con 
nected with the stage. 

By permission of Mrs, Sanders 

ii 9 


What the Art world thought of "Cinderella" may be 
gathered from the following letter from one of its most dis 
tinguished ornaments, Sir W. B. Richmond, R.A., who was for 
some vears Slade Professor at Oxford. 

From W. B. Richmond, R.A. 


"Hammersmith, April 2gth 9 rS8i. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, It is seldom that one dare express 
to the artistic c Peers ' any feeling that their work may have 
given birth to; but there may be exceptions, and even at the 
risk of seeming forward, I must tell you with all my heart 
how I love and admire your c Cinderella.' Many of the 
charms of childhood have been done by Holbein, Titian, 
Reynolds, and Gainsborough; but you have opened a new 
view, and have, as it seems to me, enriched the world by 
your original and ' human ' picture. 

t: Whether you meant all you say in that pathetic face 
matters not; you have conveyed something so subtle that I 
doubt even a thought to be sufficiently tangible for its 

" Instinct alone of the most complete sympathy with the 
subject could have, as in the act of creation, conveyed such 
delicacy of fleeting movements of the mind acting on the 
lovely unspoilt movements of childhood. Forgive me if, as 
your junior in age and merit, I have ventured thus to express 
my keenest pleasure at your lovely work. 

" Yours always sincerely, 


Reference has already been made to the exhibition of 
Millais' paintings in the Bond Street Rooms in iSSi. About 
twenty of his best pictures were sent there, and the show, 
which was under the charge of his old friend Joe Jopling, 
proved an immense success. Especially gratifying to Millais 
was the interest it aroused amongst his brother artists, and 
their generous appreciation of his works, as evidenced by 
letters from nearly all the leading painters of the day. The 
three following letters (arranged in order of dates) fairly 
represent the general feeling of the profession. 


From H. S. Marks, R.A. 


"February 2Qth y 1881. 

44 MY DEAR MILLAIS, I saw your exhibition yesterday 
with infinite pleasure, despite the people, who stood with their 

backs to the pictures, discussing the B marriage and the 

newest play. 

" I always thought you a very great painter, but this 
sample exhibition of but a tithe of your work brings more 
vividly to me the fact of your great and varied power. 

" In you I recognise always the painter of human nature 
and common sense the man of wide sympathies, who can 
invest man with his dignity, woman with her loveliness, 
childhood with an unaffected grace quite his own. 

"' Chill October' shows the same broad sympathy with 
inanimate Nature; while he who has studied birds a little 
may be allowed to compliment you on the truth of character 
and action in the ornithological touches in these pictures. 

" It should be a proud thought for you that, having never 
swerved from the right path, and having fought the good 
fight against all odds, you are recognised by your brothers as 
the distinguished head of the profession. 

"May you live long to enjoy so great and so deserved a 
distinction, to give us new pleasure. 

u Had I been an outsider, I could not have written this ; as 
a fellow Royal Academician, I can sign myself 

u Yours faithfully, but not flatteringly, 

H. S. MARKS." 

From J. Sant, R.A. 


"February 2ist. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, I have been to the * Fine Arts ' 
(truly), and am delighted with your admirable work there; 
the glorious company shows what you have done and can do. 
If I am humbled in my own opinion of myself when I 
look on this picture which is now staring me in the face, I 
shall not shed salt tears, but rather rejoice that your work 
will for ever prove a lesson to all who follow the 4 serene and 
silent Art/ You deserve what you have all success and 
honour. Yours sincerely, 

"J. SANT." 


From Briton Riviere, R.A. 


"March nth, 1881. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, You may not care for the praise 
of a feeble man, but I have just seen that collection of your 
works, and I cannot resist telling you how profound an 
impression they have made upon me. From the very 
earliest effort to the last, the work is always great and 
always your own entirely. 

" These pictures make one ask oneself what is the good 
of painting while we have among us a man who has done 
(witness the ' Princess Elizabeth ' and ' Cherry Ripe '), and 
is now doing, such admirable work. Amongst them all I 
am still true to my first love, and * The Boyhood of Raleigh ' 
still has precisely the same effect upon me that it had when 
it first appeared. Yet it is run so close by all the other 
pictures that it is impossible to place it first. 

" Forgive this scribble from yours, 

" Always a believer, 


Millais' reply to the above expresses briefly, as was his 
wont, the pleasure these letters had given him. 

To Briton Riviere, R. A. 


"March izth, 1881. 

" DEAR RIVIERE, If an artist was permitted to wear 
orders, I would like to carry on my breast the first five 
or six letters I have received anent the exhibition in Bond 
Street letters from brother artists, so generous and so candid, 
that I think they do honour to the profession, at the same 
time that they do me so much honour and make me (I hope 
innocently) happy. Yours always sincerely, 


In no year did Millais appear to greater advantage in 
portraiture than in 1881. In succession he painted Lord 
Beaconsfield (unfinished), Cardinal Newman, Principal Caird, 


of Glasgow, Sir John Astley, Sir Henry Thompson, Lord 
Wimborne, Sir Gilbert Greenall, the Duchess of West 
minster, and Captain and Mrs. James (Effie Millais); and 
all alike were recognised as fine examples of his talent, 
especially the portrait of Lord Beaconsfield, which, as will 
presently be seen, commanded, even in its unfinished state, 
the approval of the Queen. 

In March both Lord Tennyson and Lord Beaconsfield 
came to give him sittings for their portraits. Beaconsfield, 
whose portrait was a commission from the Right Hon. 
W. H. Smith, M. P., was then in poor health. He walked 
upstairs to the studio with some difficulty, and the task 
of posing in the standing attitude was at the time too much 
for his strength, so all that could be done was to paint the 
head in and make a rough outline of his figure as he stood 
for a moment or two previous to being seated on the high- 
backed chair which was placed for "him on the dais. He 
came only three times to the studio, and the last time his 
pluck alone carried him through his self-imposed ordeal. An 
arrangement was made for him to come again two or three 
days later, but the following day he was taken so seriously 
ill that the appointment had to be given up. What followed 
is a matter of history. To Millais 5 deep and lasting regret, 
he never again saw this most brilliant and most interesting of 
England's statesmen. 

The two following letters will be read with interest, the 
second (written in bed) being the last that ever came from 
the pen of the illustrious statesman. 

From Lord Beaconsfield. 


"March 2nd, 1881. 

" DEAR MR. MILLAIS, I am a very bad sitter, but will not 
easily forego my chance of being renowned to posterity by 
your illustrious pencil. All this week I am much engaged, 
but I am free, at present, on Tuesday and Wednesday the 
8th and gth, and could on either day be at your service. 
Choose the day. Would noon be a good hour ? 

" Yours faithfully, 



(In progress after two sittings) 
By permission of the Fine A rt Society 



From the same. 


^ March qth, iSSi. 

u MY DEAR APELLES, Alas! I am in the gout, and cannot 
leave my bed! Most vexatious ! I will write to you again, 
and trust I shall be able to give you the greater part of next 
week. Yours sincerely, 


Writing to his wife on March 3ist, Millais says : 

"Tennyson has just gone, and comes again to-morrow. 
Unfortunately Lord Beaconsfield has been taken seriously 
ill, but I have got his likeness fairly well, if he is unable to 
sit again. I called yesterday and saw Lord Barrington [his 
private secretary], who told me that he (Beaconsfield) is very 
anxious for his portrait to be in the Royal Academy, and will 
get the Queen's command to admit it the only way to get 
it in now. He hopes to be well enough to sit again in April, 
but to-day's bulletin is ominous. It looks as if he would die ! 
I have two pretty ladies to paint, and Cardinal Manning 
immediately, so I have enough to do. Letters are pouring 
in, and I am beside myself to answer them. I have also to 
begin Sir Henry Thompson." 

His fears were only too well grounded. On April igth 
Lord Beaconsfield passed away, and Millais having received 
a command from the Queen to exhibit his portrait, finished 
or unfinished, set to work at once on the background, leaving 
the face untouched, and only clothing the figure in the 
familiar frock-coat of the departed statesman. The picture 
was then sent to the Academy, where it was exhibited by 
itself on a screen hung with crape. 

Afterwards, on Her Majesty's command, Millais made a 
replica of the portrait on a smaller scale, pending the com 
pletion of which he received the following letter from the 
Queen's private secretary : 

From the Earl of Abercromby, 


"June zgth, 1881. 

"DEAR MR. MILLAIS, The Queen has sent me the three 
photographs which I enclose, as Her Majesty wished you 
to see them in case they may assist you in making some 


ie cul/U 



A^*- x Vt^ 



slight alterations in the copy of the portrait of Lord 

"The Queen thinks that the mouth in the photograph 
is exaggerated ; that the photograph looking down at the 
newspaper gives the form and also something of the peculiar 
expression about the corner of the mouth, suggesting a keen 
sense of humour, which contrasts with the extreme serious 
ness of the upper part of the face. It prevents the whole 
expression being sad, which perhaps you may be able to 
avoid in your second portrait, though, of course, it was the 
actual expression of the face at the time you painted the 
large portrait 

"Will you be so kind as to return me the photographs 
as soon as you conveniently can, as Her Majesty wishes me 
to send them back to her. 

" Believe me, yours truly, 


And ^finally came from the Queen herself, in her own 
handwriting, a gracious acknowledgment such as Her 
Majesty alone knows how to pen. 

From Her Majesty the Queen. 


" October i6tA, 1881. 

" The Queen wishes herself to express to Mr. Millais her 
warm thanks for the beautiful picture of dear Lord Beacons- 
field, which he has so very kindly painted for her, and which 
she values most highly. 

" It will form a most valuable addition to the Queen's 
collection of modern pictures, and has for her a peculiar and 
melancholy interest from being the last portrait her dear 
and ever-lamented friend and great Minister ever sat for, 
and when, as it were, the shadow of death was already upon 

" Mr. Millais has given the peculiar, intellectual, and gentle 
expression of his face." 


Tennyson Edward Lear's music Tennyson's dislike to servants in the room - 
He recognises a strong likeness between himself and Charles Dickens Millais 

Eaints his portrait Sir Henry Thompson's portrait by Millais Millais' portrait 
y Sir Henry Thompson Sir John Astley Cardinal Newman John Garret 
Murthly A perfect highland residence* Good sport Yarns of the river 
A monster salmon The careful sportsman A solemn warning strangely illus 
trated Thomas Carlyle An anecdote of him The Hanging Committee 
Mrs. James Stern Millais becomes a member of the Institute of France 
' Pomona " Nell Gwynne ?< *' The Grey Lady " Pictures of 1884 A 
portrait from scant materials Second portrait of Mr. Gladstone Millais visits 
Mr. Gladstone at Hawarden John Gould A visit to the old naturalist ki The 
Ruling Passion '' Found "' Millais becomes a baronet Letter from Mr. 
Gladstone Congratulations A story by Lord James A dinner party of 
thirteen, and what followed. 

"QWEETEST EYES" being now finished, Millais began 
O his portrait of Tennyson, for Mr. Knowles, Editor of 
The Nineteenth Century, and an intimate friend of the poet. 
He had known Tennyson for many years, one might almost 
say from his youth upward, and at one time they were much 
together ; but their friendship never seems to have ripened 
into intimacy a circumstance somewhat remarkable, as an 
intense love of Nature was common to them both, and no 
man was more keenly alive than Millais to the charm of 
Tennyson's works. Most of them he knew by heart, some 
he selected as subjects for pictures, and as we have seen, 
some of his best work in black-and-white was the illustration 
of the laureate's poems. 

It was under the inspiration of the poet himself that, while 
staying at Farringford, he made sketches for "Maud" and 
" Dora/' Tennyson's son, Hallam, sitting to him for one of 
the illustrations of the" last named poem.* 

But to Millais Tennyson was always somewhat of an 

* See Tennyson's u Life/' by his son, Vol. I. p. 380. 


enigma. For at least forty years he was so short-sighted 
that any book he wished to read must be held almost close 
to his eyes, and yet the scenery of his poems and all the 
natural objects he refers to are so exquisitely and so minutely 
depicted that one could hardly believe that he had never 
seen them. His taste for music was most varied. Though, 
as we know, he delighted in the works of the great com 
posers, he would now and then seemingly enjoy music that 
was scarcely classical. An instance of this occurred at a 
musical party one evening in Cromwell Place. Edward Lear, 
a charming man and author of the well-known Book of 
Nonsense, could hardly be called a musician, but being good 
at "vamping" he sat down to the piano and hummed rather 
than sang two of Tennyson's songs to tunes of his own com 
posing. It was a clever performance ; but the really musical 
people there were quite surprised at the eulogistic terms in 
which Tennyson spoke of the compositions. I cannot help 
thinking, however, that it was regard for the man rather than 
the music which caused this unexpected outburst of praise. 

Tennyson greatly disliked the presence of servants at 
meals ; so one day when he and Mr. Knowles * came un 
expectedly to lunch, my mother did the waiting herself, and 
afterwards (my father being away at the time) showed them 
round the studio. Nothing, however, seemed to interest the 
poet till they came to the sketch of Dickens made after his 
death, when after looking at it for some time he suddenly 
exclaimed, "That is a most extraordinary drawing. It is 
exactly like myself ! " And so it was, though no one had 
ever noticed this before. Dickens was a much smaller man 
than Tennyson, both in stature and figure, but the facial 
resemblance between the two was quite remarkable. 

That grand leonine head of Tennyson's, and the noble 
mind that beamed through every feature, were inspiration 
enough to insure the best work of any artist to whom he 
might sit; and Millais rising to the occasion, as he always 
did, was happy enough to secure a portrait so satisfactory to 
himself that he spoke of it to Tennyson's eldest son, the present 
Peer, as in his estimation the finest he had ever painted.t 
He said, too, much the same thing in the following letter. 

* My sincere thanks are due to Mr. Knowles for allowing me to reproduce 
here the Tennyson portrait an obligation all the greater as he himself is about 
to use the picture for a work of his own. 

t Tennyson's " Life," Vol. II. p. 261. 


To Philip Calderon, R.A. 


* October 2$tk t 1892. 

" DEAR CALDERON, I am shooting three days a week, and 
have n't commenced a landscape, and as the frost has come 
severely I don't think I shall have the chance of doing so 
this year. Winter is evidently to arrive earlier than usual, 
for the distant mountains, seen from here, are already white 
with snow, and the leaves are showering from the trees. 

wc I saw Woolner at the Garrick the night before I left 
town for the North . . . and talked a great deal about 

u At one time I knew Tennyson well, but of late years saw 
little of him I think not at all since I painted his portrait, 
which, without immodesty, I am sure is the best of him. From 
my earliest days I have been a worshipper of his works, and 
have still, I believe, his first volume, published with his 
brother's poems. 

" I stayed at Farringford before I was married, and he 
took me up one evening to show me his two children asleep 
in their cots (Lionel and Hallam). Proud father! At that 
time he was such a smoker that he took his tobacco from a 
basket beside him, when one pipe was out, immediately filling 
another from it ; and many a pleasant walk and talk I had 
with him on the downs. 

" Ever yours sincerely, 

"J. E. MlLLAIS." 

Sir Henry Thompson was another subject such as a 
portrait-painter delights to see before him. A splendidly 
modelled head, with bushy eyebrows and deep-seated pene 
trating eyes, revealed to the least observant eye the powerful 
mind of one of our greatest surgeons. It was a real pleasure 
to Millais to paint him, and all the greater as Sir Henry was 
himself an artist of no mean repute. In early life he studied 
painting as a pupil of O'Neil, and afterwards of Alma Tadema, 
and on more than one occasion his pictures were accepted by 
the Royal Academy. Referring to this portrait, a well-known 
critic says, " The keenness and incisive insight, decision, and 
masterfulness of the original are perfectly suggested, and 
a hand as firm to paint as was the eye to see." 




I was lucky enough to meet Sir Henry in 1897, while 
strolling about amongst the Surrey hills, and after a long 
talk about my father and the biography I had then in view, 
he said, " Well, if you are going to show Thompson by 
Millais, I think you ought to put in Millais by Thompson." 

Delightful suggestion! I jumped at it with eagerness, and 
presently he favoured me with the following note : " Some 


twenty-five years ago perhaps, Sir Robert Collier (afterwards 
Lord Monkswell) invited Sir Henry James (now Lord 
James), Sir John Millais, and myself -to his house in Essex, 
from Saturday to Monday, as a whist party. It was cold, 
wintry weather, near Christmas, and on Sunday morning 
James, being then Attorney-General, and Collier, being Lord 
Justice of Privy Council, thought that officially they had 
better go to church. Millais and I elected to stay at home. 
Said I to Millais, ' What are you going to do ? ' He said, 

By permission of Sir Henry Thompson^ Bart. 

II 10 


' Sit here and smoke/ " Then,' said I, * I will get a little 
mill-board, set a palette and paint you, if I may.' k All right/ 
said he. He sat quite still with his back to the window, and 
I set to work. I worked at my study the best part of two 
hours, and put it on the mantelpiece. Soon afterwards the 
two others came in. ' There,' said Millais, k that 's what we've 
been doing ! ' It was never touched afterwards, and they all 
thought it would do as it was." 

The portrait of Sir John Astley, that was now taken up, 
Millais spoke of as " the easiest thing I ever did in my 
life." There was no need to pose this subject; he just 
stood there, rattled off his racy yarns, and smoked his cigar, 
the artist himself chiming in whenever there was a pause ; 
and the picture, growing under his hand with astonishing 
speed, was finished in a few days. 

As already noted, Sir Gilbert Greenall and Cardinal 
Newman were also painted this year; and Millais, who 
had a great respect for the Cardinal, declared him to be 
the most interesting sitter, except Mr. Gladstone, who ever 
entered his studio. His portrait was, in the artist's opinion, 
amongst the finest he ever painted. 

In marked contrast to either of these men was Mr. John 
Garret, President of the Baltimore and Maryland Railway 
Company, who was now to sit for his portrait. An American 
fresh from the States was he, and no more delightful speci 
men of the race ever left the country. From humble sur 
roundings he had risen to wealth and honour as one of the 
richest and most respected men in the States ; a most genial 
man withal, a gentleman at heart, and brimming over with 
the dry humour of his country. Very taking was the frank 
and artless way in which he talked of himself and his doings, 
without a particle of swagger or self-conceit; and his tales 
about other people were so irresistibly comic that the artist 
had to drop his brush every now and then for a hearty laugh. 
For once in his life he was quite sorry when the portrait was 
finished; sorry, too, that he could not accept Mr. Garret's 
invitation to come over and paint him again in his own 
home, surrounded by all his pet thoroughbreds. An order 
this that would require a canvas of Brobdingnagian size, and 
(as Millais said) he really could not undertake to paint by 
the acre. 

Our tenancy of Murthly commenced this year (i 88 1), and 


for ten consecutive years my father held it to his great 
delight. He knew by heart, as one may say, every bit of 
the ground and every turn of the river, and his love of 
the place increased year by year. 

Except deer-stalking and for this, as time went on, he 
felt himself getting a bit too old Murthly had everything 
that a sportsman could desire. Though big bags were not 
to be made, there was ample sport for two or three guns 
from August ist to the end of January, and the variety 
of the game added greatly to the interest of the shooting. 
Besides pheasants, of which about a thousand were reared 
every year, from 300 to 600 brace of partridges were brought 
to bag each season. There was also first-rate wood-shooting, 
including black-game, woodcock, capercailzie, hares, rabbits, 
and roedeer; and two little moors yielded about 150 brace 
of grouse. But what pleased us most of all was " the bog," 
situated in the middle of one of the grouse moors and about 
three-quarters of a mile long, with another small bog some 
eight hundred yards away, where the duck, teal, and snipe 
could take refuge on being disturbed. 

A large number of these birds always bred there, and 
after the first two or three weeks of shooting, the places of 
those that were killed were always filled by passing migrants 
wending their way south ; so one frequently had just as 
good a day's shooting on October ist as on August i2th. 
It was a sight to see when the first shot of the season was 
fired among the water-fowl. In one moment over a thousand 
ducks and teal were in the air. Yet to shoot them was no 
easy task, as many a keen sportsman found out to the lower 
ing of his pride as a gunner. One noble lord, who was 
considered a good shot, told me himself that he had got 
rid of 105 cartridges, and that his bag for the day w T as two 
partridges, both of which he killed with one shot! 

My father delighted in these jolly days at " the Bog," 
and, with his enthusiastic nature, expected everyone else 
to do so, no matter whether the mosquitoes bit their legs 
or they got wet up to the middle and shot nothing. I can 
see him now as he used to squat behind his favourite 
whin-bush, banging away to left and right, and occasionally 
fetching down what he persisted in calling "the teal that 
at heaven's gate sings." When he got a particularly tall 
one he was as pleased as a schoolboy, and would have been 
sorely disappointed if anyone had failed to rejoice with him ; 

By permission of Sir F. AstleyCorfott 


but his delight in any success was always that of simple 
enthusiasm, absolutely free from any thought of swagger. 
If anyone else shot well he was the first to notice it, and 
many a time his hearty applause spoiled his own chance of 
a shot. 

This shooting at " the Bog," which took place once a week 
all through the season, was not without its dangers, even to 
the most experienced sportsmen. In one drive the butts were 
placed in echelon, and, being constructed of whin-bushes on a 
whin-covered moor, were not easily seen. Some few acci 
dents, therefore, occurred there. 'One day a well-known 
sportsman fired straight into a whin-bush, behind which my 
uncle, George Gray, was sitting extracting his cartridges. 
On another occasion my father himself, when firing at a 
blackcock, put an ounce" of shot, at twenty yards, into the 
game-bag which covered the person of Master Bob Keay, 
the keeper's son, who was quietly packing the game behind 
a tussock. But the most alarming occurrence within my 
experience happened in this wise: My father was in one 
of the forward butts to the left, and I in one at the extreme 
end of the bog. I was getting most of the shooting, and 
as the drive was nearing the end, my father, seeing some 
snipe slipping away between us, moved down behind the 
bushes to a butt exactly opposite me, without telling me 
he had done so. By-and-by a snipe came along low, and 
I killed it, when, to my horror, an incensed parent suddenly 
rose from behind a big whin-bush in the line of my fire, 
and let go some red-hot words that one may hope were 
blotted out in another place, like Uncle Toby's famous oath. 
Happily, only two pellets had struck him, one on the fore 
head and the other on the chin; for if one of them had 
touched his eye it would certainly have blinded him. A 
word of explanation satisfied him that the accident was due 
to himself alone ; and for the rest, what can you not forgive 
a man who has just tasted part of an ounce of No. 6 ? The 
only unpardonable thing was the flippancy of 'a wretched 
punster, who persisted in calling me " Bag-dad " for the rest 
of the day. 

The fishing at Murthly was distinctly good. Though 
previous tenants and their friends had not caught more than 
forty or fifty fish each season, my father got about that 
number each year to his own rod alone. Our best season 
was in 1890, when 120 fish were killed between August 22nd 


and October loth (no great number in comparison with takes 
in other rivers in Scotland), yet the average size of the 
salmon is probably larger than that of any other river in 
the world. A photograph I have shows the result of a first- 
rate day by two rods, one on the upper and one on the lower 
beat. Fifteen fish are here seen, with an average weight of 
twenty-one pounds, the largest weighing thirty-two pounds. 

The river was divided into two sections, comprising in all 
about six miles of water, and most of the fishing was done 
by casting from a cobble, as the streams were too deep to 
wade. For harling (i.e., sitting in a boat and trailing a fly 
and a couple of minnows behind, so that the fish comes and 
hooks itself) my father had the profoundest contempt, and 
thought little of the man who caught fish in that way if he 
were able to cast Rain or shine, nearly every day when 
possible to fish saw the old sportsman flogging away at his 
favourite pools. His energy was extraordinary. Even a 
young man finds it pretty hard work to throw twenty or 
thirty yards of line on a nineteen-foot rod continuously for 
six or seven hours together, but he delighted in doing it, and 
hardly ever gave up his rod to Miller (the fisherman) to cast 
in his stead. 

Before coming to Murthly he had never landed anything 
exceeding thirty-two pounds, but here there was always 
a chance a chance dear to the heart of a salmon-fisher 
of that forty or fifty-pounder which he longed to hook; 
and the day came at last (in 1888), when a forty- 
pounder kindly accepted his invitation to his subse 
quent regret. A few days afterwards another of equal 
weight came to land when he least expected it, and but 
for Miller's carelessness a third, about the same size, 
would have shared the same fate. He was well hooked, 
and after over an hour's struggle to get away was so ob 
viously exhausted that they towed him to the shore, when 
the gaffer, missing his first shot, made the fatal mistake of 
trying a second immediately afterwards, thereby catching, not 
the fish, but the cast, which instantly parted. 

And here (with many apologies to the reader) I am afraid 
I must bring myself into this narrative. As all fishermen 
know, there is in every big stretch of water a master fish 
(generally an old male) which annually comes up from the 
sea, and, locating himself behind some big stone, keeps off 
all other fish about his own size. Such a one for several 

By permission of Tkos. Agnew and Sons 


years frequented the great black pool opposite Miller's house, 
and every device was tried to catch him, but in vain. My 
father tried and Miller tried, and at last I tried, my father 
kindly lending me his boat one afternoon, while he contented 
himself with looking on. Xow this piece of water is about 
the most difficult cast on the Tay, requiring a very long line 
and, commonly, a lot of patience to fish it successfully ; but 
this was just what my father could not stand as a mere 
spectator, with no hand in the game, so at the first sign of 
impatience I handed him the rod, and on the third cast he 
was into what was evidently a monster. My time was now 
up f I had to fly for a train to Cambridge) but two days later 
I had a letter from him telling me he had caught the " calf," a 
grand, clean-run fish of forty-four pounds, after a fair fight of 
an hour and a half. Delightful news this, told in the writer's 
happiest vein, to which, in sheer nonsense, I replied that next 
year I would fish that water with him and catch a bigger one. 
Well, nothing is so sure to happen as the unexpected. 
Towards the end of 1890 I was fishing there with my father, 
when, on my second cast behind the big stone, the line 
straightened, and I had hold of another "calf!" There was 
no doubt as to his size, for we had a fine view of him as he 
sprang out of the water after rushing up stream for about one 
hundred yards ; and though big fish seldom give very inter 
esting play, this one, after a preliminary sulk, fought like a 
lion for two hours and a half, taking us four times across the 
river. Even the powers of a " calf, 1 ' however, are limited, 
and though he absolutely refused to come into the shallows, 
we got the boat endways-on from the shore, and after several 
attempts Miller got home with his cleek. There was a 
kick from the fish as he came over the gunwale, the gaff 
straightened, and the monster was in the boat, whilst my 
father and I did a dance of delight on the bank. This fellow 
weighed forty-six pounds, the largest ever caught at Murthly. 
The annual wood shoot, which usually took place about 
October aoth, was an event always much enjoyed by Millais. 
Five good guns were generally invited to join us, including 
old friends in the neighbourhood, such as Mr. John Bett, of 
Rohallion ; Mr. Athol MacGregor, from Eastwood ; Colonel 
Stuart Richardson, of Ballathie; and George Gray, from 
Perth. This shoot lasted for three days, and we always 
covered the whole ground, enjoying, as we went along, a 
great variety of beautiful landscape, from cultivated fields to 


shaggy Scotch fir-woods, heather-lands, and bogs. To a 
good performer with the gun it was quite possible to kill, 
right and left, a roebuck and a snipe, and immediately after 
wards to bag, in like manner, a lordly cock capercailzie and a 

The shooting at Murthly being somewhat dangerous, none 
but the safest guns were asked, and even these were always 
warned by the host to avoid firing towards houses, etc. This 
little lecture, which, in course of time, became a standing 
joke in the family, was repeated one day (a day I can never 
forget) while crossing a big turnip field in pursuit of part 
ridges. In the middle of the field was a cottage, at one of 
the windows of which sat an old woman engaged in knitting, 
and now, of course, the customary " word in season," could 
not be omitted. We listened with mock gravity, but five 
minutes later the wisdom of the advice was proved to us in a 
way we had hardly expected. Firing at a partridge flying 
back, my father killed his bird, peppered the old woman, and 
smashed five panes of glass, all at one shot ! I am sorry to 
say it, but a shriek of joy went up from the whole party, 
while my father hurried off to make all the reparation in his 
power for the injury he had inflicted. 

In 1891 Sir Douglas Stewart, the proprietor, died, and the 
estate falling into the hands of Mr. Fotheringham, who 
naturally wished to take it over himself, we had to give it 
up. This was a great blow to all of us, as after such a long 
tenancy we had almost come to regard it as our home. 
Apart from the place itself, so charming and so unique in its 
way, my father had a great affection for all the people about 
it, and I venture to say they had for him. In the three 
keepers James Keay, James Haggart, and Robert Conacher 
we had quite exceptional men of their class, Highlanders 
of the very best type, in whom were blended all the finest 
qualities of unspoilt natures. Of James Keay (a gentleman 
in everything but social rank) my father was particularly 
fond, and he always considered him one of the best men he 
ever came in contact with. James Miller too (the fisherman), 
though a man of somewhat different stamp, was a great 
favourite of his; and of all the mourners that a few years 
later assembled in St. Paul's Cathedral to pay their last 
tribute to Sir John's memory, I doubt if any outside the 
family knew him better or felt his loss more sincerely than 
these honest and tough old Highlanders. 

J. C. HOOK, R.A. 1882 

By permission o/Mr.J. C. Hook, R.A. 


So much for Murthly and its reminiscences. I must come 
back now^to the beginning of 1882, when, at the request of 
his old friend Reginald Cholmondeley, Millais undertook to 
paint for him a portrait of Thomas Carlyle. Carlyle was 
then a frail old man of eighty-three, but his picturesque and 
rugged features lent themselves well to portraiture, as may 
be seen from the excellent likeness of him which no\v hangs 
in the National Portrait Gallery. It was purchased by the 
nation in 1894, and in a letter of that year to Sir George 
Scharf, Millais says, U I painted Carlyle in three sittings. 
The hands alone were unfinished. 1 ' 

Amongst the numerous anecdotes connected with Carlyle 
is a story about these visits to Palace Gate, commonly told 
as an illustration of his sarcasm and rudeness of speech ; but 
the facts are not exactly as recorded. The tale runs that, 
struck with the grandeur of the marble staircase and the fine 
pictures that hung on the walls, he said, turning to the artist, 

"And does all this er " (indicating the surroundings 

with a wave of his hand) " come from a paint-pot ? " It was 
not he who made this polite inquiry, but his niece who ac 
companied him and who afterwards wrote his life. 

A commission from the Queen now engaged Millais 5 
attention. He was to paint for exhibition this year a portrait 
of H.R.H. the Princess Marie of Edinburgh, then a child of 
seven or eight years, and now Crown Princess of Roumania. 
Instructions for this portrait were conveyed to him through 
Lord Abercromby, who after some preliminary correspond 
ence wrote to Millais : " The Queen is much pleased at the 
manner in which you have so readily proposed to paint the 
portrait, and Her Majesty leaves the whole arrangement of 
the attitude and dress entirely to you, wishing to have not 
merely a portrait, but a characteristic picture of your own 
composition. I enclose another photograph, as the attitude 
is so pretty and graceful that I thought you might wish to 
have it by you. It gives a very good idea of the graceful 
ness of the little Princess, and (as you so well know) children's 
attitudes vary greatly and have so much of character in 

In composing this picture Millais thought it would be well 
to show the multitude that, though of high degree, the little 
Princess was by no means brought up to lead an idle and 
useless life, but was taught to work for others, if not for 
herself ; so he designedly presented her holding her knitting 


in her hands. The picture, however, though Her Majesty 
was graciously pleased to approve of it, was not altogether 
to his mind. He strove hard to get the effect he wanted, 
but the divine afflatus that alone can give life to works of 
this sort failed him, as upon occasion it was wont to do. 
The result was an excellent likeness, but nothing more. 

In a letter to my mother, dated April i8th, 1882, he speaks 
of the hard work then devolving on him as a member of 
the Hanging Committee of the Academy, which perhaps 
accounted in some measure for this failure. He says : " At 
last I have a moment to write, having finished the hanging 
at the Royal Academy yesterday. From half-past nine till 
dark I have been there every day, and dined and attended 
councils afterwards till eleven. Never has there been such 
work. Eight thousand works were sent in ; so you may 
imagine what trouble and anxiety the hangers have had in 
selecting and placing works according to their merit. During 
this time my correspondence increased, and this morning I 
have been writing without cessation till now, nearly two 
o'clock. This is my twenty-second letter, and still my table 
is littered with the unanswered. The Duke of Westminster 
writes asking me to paint the lady he is to marry. I have, 
of course, undertaken the commission, but have to answer 
his last, appointing sittings. The Queen yesterday sent 
through Ponsonby, her approval of the Princess Marie's 
portrait. She seems highly pleased, so that is all right." * 

Other notable portraits of this year were those of the 
Marquis of Salisbury (painted for W. H. Smith, M.P.), the 
Duchess of Westminster, J. C. Hook, R.A., and Mrs. James 
Stern. Hook's portrait was given to him in exchange for 
one of his own pictures of the sea. " Mrs. Stern " Millais 
considered the best portrait of a lady he had ever painted, 
except, perhaps, that of Mrs. Bischoffsheim as it well might 
be, considering the time and labour bestowed upon it. In a 
letter to me Mr. Stern writes : 

" Mrs. Stern has the most pleasant recollections of her 
sittings to your father. When he began to paint her portrait 

* In his speech at the Academy banquet in May, 1882, the Duke of Edinburgh 
said : " Before sitting down I should like to say, in one word, how much I have 
enjoyed the pleasure of seeing the fine pictures which adorn this room and the 
adjoining rooms. And more especially I desire to thank one of the most distin 
guished members of your institution Mr. Millais for the admirable way in 
which he has perpetuated, and the charming manner in which he has drawn the 
features of my little girl." 


he asked her if she would give him as many sittings as he 
wanted, as he wished to finish her picture like a miniature. 
Mrs, Stern answered that she would be delighted to do so, 
and he actually painted the face through a magnifying glass?* 
Of all the honours that were showered upon Millais during 
his lifetime none were more highly valued by him than the 
two he received this year. As against two formidable rivals, 
the Abbe Liszt and M. Geefs, the Academie des Beaux Arts 
elected him as a Foreign Associate, while from Germany 
came the Order, " Pour le Merite," these being respectively 
the highest civil distinctions that either of the two countries 
has to bestow, and reserved exclusively for men of eminence 
in Art or Science. The election by the French Academy 
was announced to Millais in the following letter : 

From M. Delaborde. 



"4 Mars, 1882. 

vous prevenir que dans la seance de ce jour 1'academie vous 
a nomme a la place d'associe etranger vacante par suite du 
deces de M. Giovanni Dapre. 

" Aussit6t que Tacademie aura re9u 1'ampliation du decret 
approuvant votre election, je m'empresserai de vous 

"Agreez, Monsieur et tres-honore confrere, avec mes 
felicitations personelles Tassurance de ma haute consideration 
et mes sentiments devoues. 


From other members of the Institute came also hearty 
letters of congratulation, and the Due d'Aumale, who had 
himself done much for Art in its widest sense, left his card at 
Palace Gate, on which was written after his name, "felicite 
Mr. Millais de son confrere a r Academie des Beaux Arts'' 

Millais' best picture of the year was undoubtedly 
" Pomona." The little goddess of the orchard was Margaret 
Millais, third daughter of his brother William; and as a 
reward for her sittings he presented her the following year 
with a charming portrait of herself. 

* It is interesting to note that Mrs. James Stern is the sister of Mrs. Bischoffsheim. 
II it 


This year also produced u The Captive," for which Miss 
Ruby Streatfield, now the Hon. Mrs. Colville, stood, and 
amongst other work was the completion of a big canvas 
begun by Landseer and left unfinished at his death the 
picture now known as " Nell Gwynne." As already stated, 
Landseer expressed a wish, when dying, that Millais and 
no other should complete the three paintings left unfinished 
in his studio, and this was one of them. The title was 
selected by my father, and my sister Effie sat for the figure 
of the lady. When it came into his possession there was 
nothing on the canvas except the white palfrey, which was 
beautifully finished. A blank space was left for the hound 
in the immediate foreground, and in the background was 
a suggestion of a lake and swans. And now, being greatly 
pressed for time, he called in the aid of John O'Connor, 
who painted for him the big stone archway the first time 
since " The Rescue " (when Charles Collins painted the fire 
hose) that he ever allowed the hand of another to touch 
any canvas of his. 

In 1883 "The Grey Lady" came into being. Some years 
before, it may be remembered, Millais painted one of the 
upper staircases at St. Mary's Tower, Birnam, as a back 
ground for "The Princes in the Tower," but ultimately 
laid the painting aside as unsuitable for his purpose. This 
he now took up again, utilising it for the picture in hand. 
The wraith of a murdered woman is supposed to haunt 
the staircase of a Highland castle, and is here seen stagger 
ing across the foreground in a tragic attitude, the subtle 
treatment of the subject recalling that of his earlier picture, 
" The Eve of St. Agnes." My sister Alice (Mrs. Stuart- 
Wortley) sat for the figure ; and it is really a capital likeness 
of her, attenuated to the shadowy form of a ghost. 

" I noticed the unfinished canvas," says Mrs. Stuart- 
Wortley, " one winter's day in his studio, and he said what a 
ghostly subject it would make* The same evening he asked 
me to sit to him, so on that and most evenings following I 
posed for the figure of c The Grey Lady.' It is probably the 
only picture he painted almost entirely by the electric light." 

Altogether it was a very busy year, much of the artist's 
time being devoted to the interest of his friends. Besides 
the portrait of himself, now finished and presented to the 
Uffizzi Gallery in Florence, he painted and gave away three 
other portraits. One of his niece, Margaret Millais, he pre- 

By ermission of Lady Stepney 


sented to herself, one of Sir Henry Irving to the Garrick 
Club, and one of the Marquis of Lome to the Canadian 
Art ^ Gallery. It was owing to a request from the Princess 
Louise, when the Marquis was Viceroy of Canada, that this 
last-named picture was painted. The Princess asked for a 
sketch for the gallery then being organised, and in response 
Millais sent this portrait as his contribution to the collection. 

The two child-pictures u Little Miss Muffet " and u The 
Message from the Sea" were produced in 1884. They 
were both painted from models, and passed into the hands 
of Mr. Wertheimer, as did also that of "Perfect Bliss " 
a child revelling, all unnoticed, in the luscious fruits of a 
strawberry-bed. Two other works followed them, "The 
Stowaway" and "The Waif and Stray"; and before the 
year was out he finished, besides a number of portraits, 
the large canvas entitled u An Idyll of 1745.'' In this 
picture a little English drummer-boy ,' dressed in the gorgeous 
uniform of the day, is leaning against a tree on the bank 
of a Highland stream and discoursing sweet music on a 
fife to three rough little maidens from the hills, who, with 
wide-open eyes, regard him admiringly. On the other side of 
the tree is another English soldier-boy, watching with evident 
pleasure the innocent joy of the rustic audience ; and in the 
distance are seen the tents of the Southern army.* 

The models for the three girls gave him more trouble 
than any he ever had to deal with. They were three little 
gypsies 'whom he engaged to come and sit for him in 
London ; and with the characteristic carelessness of their 
race, they just came when they liked, and only smiled 
benignly when lectured on their lack of punctuality and 
the grievance it was to the artist. Again and again he 
would explain to them that unless they came at eleven 
o'clock he could not get the light he wanted. They would 
promise to come, but not until one o'clock next day would 
any of them turn up, and then perhaps only one. Once, 
to his intense annoyance, they failed to appear until the 
afternoon light was waning, and none of them attempted 
to offer any excuse. That he was uncommonly glad when 
the work was finished goes without saying. 

One of this year's portraits that interested him very much 

* Originally the scene was drawn in as taking place on board ship : but as the 
artist progressed he abandoned the idea, and altered the background to that of a 
Highland landscape. 


was that of little Lady Peggy Primrose,* youngest daughter 
of the Earl of Rosebery. During the progress of this 
work the child became much attached to my father; and 
afterwards when, owing to an illness, some of her pretty 
hair had to be cut off, one of her golden locks was sent 
to him at Murthly, at her special request. He was much 
touched by this souvenir of his little friend ; and the childish 
gift is still carefully preserved at Bowerswell. The portrait 
was exhibited at the Academy in the following year as a 
pendant to that of Lady Sybil Primrose by Leighton. 

Another portrait of this year was completed under circum 
stances of considerable difficulty. Millais was asked by 
his old friend, the late Sir George Russell, of Swallowfield, 
to try and make a portrait of his deceased brother Sir 
Charles, the only materials at command being a sketch by 
Desange, a water-colour of the boy in early youth by 
Richmond, and a lock of his hair. From these, however, 
he evolved a portrait the truth of which may be gathered 
from what Sir George said of it in a letter to the artist: 

" Your picture of my dear brother has arrived. The more 
we look at it, the more amazed and delighted we are. It is 
truly wonderful, and to me the possession is one of priceless 
value under your touch he seems to live again. No words 
of mine can adequately thank you, and I shall prize it not 
only as a marvellous and beautiful portrait, but also as a 
memento of my dear old friend, yourself. Always your 

grateful and affectionate friend, cc ~ ~ 


Before leaving for the North in August a good start 
was made with a second portrait of Gladstone, representing 
him on this occasion in his robes of crimson and lake as a 
D.C.L. of Oxford. The brilliant colouring of the robes 
seemed to give additional force and fire to a face always 
marked by the strong individuality of the man, and when 
finished, in the following year, Millais considered the portrait 
a better one than that of 1879. Lord Rosebery happily 
described it as " Gladstone the fighter," in contradistinction to 
the earlier portrait, which he named " Gladstone the scholar." 
Writing to his wife on August ist, 1884, Millais says : 
u Only a moment to write, so hard at work. I have Gladstone 
better than the first time. Miss Gladstone and Lady Stepney 
have been, and are delighted. I never did so fine a portrait, 
and I am getting on with the other works as well. I hope to 

* Now Countess of Crewe. ' 

By permission of Mr, F. Gurney 


finish them, but not Gladstone, which would be impossible. 
Dined with him last week. Lord Rosebery has been and 
seen h Peggy/ and is also delighted, so I have good reason to 
be pleased ; but the work is terribly hard, painting till five 
every day- Just finished basket of flowers in Fox White's 
picture [ k A \Yaif], Have been all day at this. I have only 
now to finish * Peggy's ' background. I come North with 
George and Charles Hall on the Sth, arriving at Birnam next 
morning ; so send the traps for us. . . ." 

Returning to England in October, he paid a short visit to 
Mr. Gladstone at Hawarden a visit he greatly enjoyed 
and then commenced at home what he always considered one 
of his best works, *" The Ruling Passion/' 

The origin of this picture was somewhat singular. John 
Gould, the famous ornithologist, had a fine collection of birds- 
of-paradise, most of them then extremely rare and valuable ; 
and through the agency of German and Dutch collectors he 
managed to obtain from New Guinea specimens of any new 
species that might be discovered. Mr. Reginald Cholmon- 
deley, of whom I have spoken before, was also an enthusiastic 
collector, and with a view to business he paid several visits to 
Gould at his house in Charlotte Square, and ultimately by 
the exercise of great tact and patience he attained his end, 
securing at big prices such specimens as he wanted. I went 
with him on several of these occasions, and was greatly 
amused at the old man's veneration for his treasures, and the 
tenacity with which he clung to them when my companion 
even so much as hinted at a purchase. He was at this time 
a confirmed invalid and confined to his couch, and when a 
drawer-full of birds was placed in his lap he would slowly and 
solemnly lift the lid and handle his specimens with fingers 
trembling with emotion. At other times his temper, owing 
to his infirmities, was not altogether angelic. He hated the 
sight of a stranger, and except the few naturalists of his ac 
quaintance, no one was ever allowed to be admitted to his 
presence. Greatly, therefore, was I surprised when one day 
he expressed a wish to see my father. 

It was in the middle of winter when my father and I called 
upon him, by appointment ; and after waiting impatiently half 
an hour in the cold hall, we were just on the point of leaving 
when the door opened, and we were ushered into his sitting- 
room. The old man was evidently got up for the occasion. 


In front of him, as he sat propped up on his couch, was a 
lovely water-colour drawing of a humming-bird recently dis 
covered (the Chimborazo Hill Star, I think), on which he 
apparently wished us to believe he was working. But it 
would not do. We nearly laughed outright when, in reply 
to an inquiry whether the work was finished, he said, " Oh, 
no ; I am just going to put in another humming-bird in the 
background," and suiting the action to the word, sketched on 
it an object such as never yet was seen on land or sea. How 
ever, artist or not, he was a devoted and well-informed 
naturalist, who by sheer hard work had won his way to the 
front in a profession in which none but an enthusiast could 
ever hope to succeed. 

And now, calling in his two daughters to help him for 
they alone were ever allowed to touch his cases the old man 
showed us all his latest gems from New Guinea and the 
Papuan Islands, and afterwards his unique collection of 
humming-birds, all of which were set up in cases, and may 
now be seen (alas ! with diminished lustre) in the Natural 
History Museum at South Kensington.* 

My father was delighted with all he saw, and on our way 
home he said to me, "That's a fine subject; a very fine 
subject. I shall paint it when I have time." And he did. 
" The Ruling Passion " was commenced in the early spring 
of 1885, and finished in time for the Academy Exhibition 
that year a really wonderful performance, considering the 
labour expended on the numerous figures and accessories. 

Perhaps no work of Millais has improved so much in the 
same space of time. When it was first hung in the dining-room 
at Palace Gate there was a coldness and want of tone about 
it that was most noticeable ; yet every year it seems to have 
sunk and sweetened, till to day it is almost like a different 
picture. The figure of the \voman leaning over the couch 
with her arm round the neck of one of the boys is, I venture 
to think, as fine as anything he ever painted ; but if he could 
have persuaded himself to sacrifice the two little children (as 
he did in " The North- West Passage," after weeks of labour 
on them) the picture would no doubt have been vastly im 
proved. With their happy, bright little faces they somewhat 
clog the composition and weaken, if not destroy, the senti 
ment, as Millais himself eventually saw. However, " time and 

* After Gould's death his collection of humming-birds was sold to the authorities 
of the Natural History Museum for something over ^5000. 


/ J 

varnish," as he said, have been very good even to them, and 
a hundred years hence they may possibly be looked upon as 
indispensable accessories to the composition. As originally 
painted, the crude colour of the old man's pillow and blanket 
militated against the general tone of the picture ; so when it 
came back from the Academy Millais altered this, to the 
great improvement of the work. 

Mr. Spielmann says of it, k * Mr. Ruskin, who wrote/ I have 
never seen any work of modern Art with more delight and 
admiration than this/ once told me that he thought it the 
finest of its kind painted in modern times, whether for senti 
ment or for management of colour/' 

Millais' old friend, T. O. Barlow, the engraver then, alas, 
nearing the end of his days sat for the principal figure; the 
two little boys were " Bubbles " and his brother George, the 
artist's grandsons; the graceful woman was a model who 
also stood for the principal figure in " The Nest " ; and the 
boy in the sailor-suit was Ivor Byng, son of the Hon. and 
Rev. Francis Byng, formerly chaplain to the House of 
Commons. The girl in the foreground, to the left, was a 
professional model, who also sat for one of the girls in the 
" Idyll." The big Sheraton bookcase at the back of the 
picture was formerly used in my mother's room, and all 
the birds were taken from my collection. 

The picture was originally painted as a commission ; but the 
prospective owner rather objected to it as reminding him of 
the sick-room in which one of his family had recently died 
after a long illness. My father therefore decided to keep it 
himself, hoping, as he said, that if it ever passed out of the 
possession of the family it would go to some public gallery. 

The public and the critics were constantly crying out to 
Millais that he should abandon his portraits, landscapes, and 
child pictures, and devote his attention to more important 
subjects ; but, as will be seen from the following letter, he 
was not encouraged in this direction by the way in which 
"The Ruling Passion," was received. 

To Mrs. Perugini. 


" May ith, 1885. 

"DEAR KATE, Thank you so much for the book about 
your father, which is most interesting. I have only just 


found out that you have given it to me. I \vant the loan 
of^ The Old Curiosity Shop (illustrated edition), as I am 
thinking of painting the old grandfather and Little Nell; 
indeed, I have begun it to-day, my first attempt at work 
since I was invalided. 

" I must, of course, adhere to the received idea of the 
character, and can only do so by referring to the illustrations. 

" I have only worked two hours, and feel I have done 
too much, so I am not very hopeful at present Both Sir 

A. B and Mr. C decline to have 'The Ruling 

Passion. 5 I don't think, therefore, I will trouble the critics 
and public any more with what is called 'an important 

" With love to Carlo, believe me, 

"Ever sincerely yours, 


" Found " was another of the canvases left unfinished by 
Sir Edwin Landseer; the subject, a dead fallow buck found 
by some Scotch terriers. They are all in the immediate 
foreground, and painted in his very best manner. Millais 
painted in the landscape, but did not carry out the idea of 
the sketch by Landseer, representing, in coloured chalks, a 
Highland valley (Glenfeshie), no fallow deer being found there. 
I am not quite sure where the background was painted, but 
I think it was in an English park; probably Knole, near 

It was in June of this year that, with the approval of 
the Queen, Mr. Gladstone's Government, then on the eve of 
retirement, decided to do honour to Art by offering baronet 
cies to Millais and Mr. Watts. Mr. Watts, for reasons highly 
honourable to himself, declined the offer; but as will be 
seen from the subjoined letter from Matthew Arnold, Millais 
had long held that a distinction like this was not only an 
honour to the recipient, but to the whole body of artists, 
and an encouragement to the pursuit of Art in its highest 
and noblest form. He therefore accepted with pleasure the 
proffered dignity. 

And now letters of congratulation poured in upon him 
from all quarters, from friends at home and friends abroad 
letters enough to fill another volume of this work but 
none of them more generous, more enthusiastic, or more 

By permission of Mr. James Stern 

i88 5 ] A BARONETCY 


valued by my father than those from his brother artists. 
Some few of these I append, together with one or two 
others that seem to me of special interest. And first the 
graceful letter from Mr. Gladstone, conveying the offer of 
the baronetcy. 

From the Right Hon. W. E. Gladstone. 


"June 24$, 1885. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, It is with a very lively satisfaction, 
both personal and public, that I write, with the sanction of 
Her Majesty (and lawfully, though at the last gap), to ask 
you to accept the honour of hereditary title and take your 
place amongst the baronets of the United Kingdom. 

" Believe me, sincerely yours, 


" Unless I hear to the contrary, I hope to come and sit at 
twelve to-morrow." 

From Mr. Frederick Leighton, R.A. 


"June 26th, 1885. 

" DEAR MILLAIS, Let me be among the very first to 
congratulate you warmly on your new and merited honours. 
English artists will rejoice that the position of Art in the 
national life has been at last acknowledged by an English 
prime minister, and they will rejoice not less that two such 
worthy recipients of honours were at hand among us. 
" Believe me, dear Millais, ever yours, 


From Mr. P. H. Calderon, R.A. 


"June 26^, 1885. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, A thousand hearty congratulations ! 
We painters are tremendous philosophers, and despise titles 
and honours ; but when they come either to ourselves or to 
those we love, we chuckle with joy as much as anybody 

II 12 


the members of our craft grieved when you were 
laid up; and now they will all rejoice at your well-merited 
honour. So, all hail to Sir John Everett Millais, the first 
painter ever made a baronet ! 

" Pray present my regards and congratulations to Lady 
Millais, and believe me ever 

"Yours sincerely, 


From Mr. H. T. Wells, R.A. 


"June 26th, 1885. 

"DEAR MILLAIS, I have just read the news! At last 
artists are baronets, and henceforth you and Watts will 
stand in evidence that doctors, lawyers, and merchants have 
not the monopoly of that rank. Need I say that my admira 
tion of the man and of the artist makes me rejoice in the fact 
that you have been chosen for the innovation ? My heartiest 
congratulations to you and Lady Millais. 

" I hope to call upon you to-morrow about 6.30 p.m. for 
the chance of picking you up and walking with you to this 
house. Calderon said he should come half an hour before 
the dinner, for a lounge in the studio ; so, as the host, I 
must be here at seven o'clock to receive him. . . .' 

" Armstead and Fildes are also coming to meet you. 
They could scarcely have hoped that the little dinner with 
you would be so happily timed. A certain bottle of cham 
pagne, the last of its famous class, has been waiting in my 
cellar for some very honourable occasion. Its fate is now 
decided. It is old, and I shall watch the uncorking with 
anxiety. If it pops, it will be divine. 

" Yours very truly, 


From Mr. Du Maiirier. 


"June 26t/i, 1885. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, Let me warmly congratulate the 
baronetage of England, in your person, on your accession 
to the order. I think they should have made you a Baron 

By permission of Thomas McLean and Son 


instead of a baronet ; but it is a step in the right direction. 
After all, the great surgeons and physicians, whom I look 
upon as being, avec nous autres, the salt of the earth, are 
honoured at least to this extent ; so we are in fairly good 
company, in spite of swipes, stinks, and stucco. 

" With everybody's love, yours sincerely, 


From Mr. Matthew Arnold. 


"June 29 th. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, Nothing could make you more the 
head' of your profession and more admired by the public than 
you are, but I am very glad that you should shed lustre on 
the baronetage ; the more so as I remember a conversation 
at Birnam in which you maintained with a great deal of 
force that these marks of recognition to artists had their 
real value and utility. I am glad that the recognition should 
have been given, and glad too of the opportunity of saying 
with what cordial admiration, liking, and regard, I am 

" Sincerely yours, 


" I hope and trust you are all right again. I wonder if 
Mrs. Millais (to whom give my best congratulations) would 
let me come to luncheon some day in July." 

Returning now to his life at Palace Gate, I find a letter to 
my mother, dated August ist, 1885, in which he says : 
" You will be glad to hear I have quite finished ' Little 
Nell/ Mrs. Jones, and Gladstone; so I have only a little 
to do to the Master of the Rolls [Lord Esher] and Barlow 
backgrounds. Indeed, I finished before I expected, but 
it has been hard, hard work. ... I find, on comparing 
what I have been doing with the Royal Academy work just 
returned, that it is better than what I have done since ; but 
the scratches * done by malicious hands will take me some 
time to repair. 

* These " scratches " were the work of some miscreant who went through the 
rooms of the Academy shortly after its opening, scratching and cutting with some 
sharp instrument many of the best pictures. It was thought that the perpetrator 
of this infamous act was some artist whose mind had been unhinged by repeated 
disappointments, but the culprit was never discovered. 


" Crabbe, George Stibbard, and I leave on Sunday even 
ing, so have everything ready for us. I have just got 
through a terrible lot of unanswered correspondence, so 
as to be clear. My head is quite giddy with all I have 
had to do, and I never seem to be free of vexatious work. 

" I wrote just now asking Lord Wolseley for October ist 
till the roth, to fish, as he failed to come last season." 

A few days later he and his friends joined my mother 
and other members of the family at Birnam Hall, Murthly, 
and in the following months the party was increased by the 
arrival of five additional guests Matthew Arnold, Miss 

G. S , and three of my old college friends, Edgar 

Dawson, Arthur Newton, and E. S (I suppress his 

name, for reasons that will presently appear), making 
thirteen in all. An unlucky number this, as we all know ; 
but nobody noticed it till we had all sat down to dinner, 

when Miss G. S called attention to the fact She dare 

not, she said, be one of the thirteen, after her painful ex 
perience on a former occasion when thirteen were present ; 
and my father failing to laugh her out of her superstition, 
asked me as the only son at home to go and dine in the 
drawing-room, which I accordingly did. Still the lady was 
not at ease ; she became very anxious, and said repeatedly, 
" I fear some calamity will happen." 

When the ladies were about to rise, I came back to the 
dining-room, and found Matthew Arnold discoursing learnedly 

on the subject of superstition. " And now, Miss S ," 

said he, with a laugh, " the idea is that whoever leaves the 
table first will die within a year, so, with the permission 
of the ladies, we will cheat the Fates for once. I and these 

fine strong lads (pointing to Edgar Dawson and E. S ) 

will all rise together, and I think our united constitutions 
will be able to withstand the assault of the Reaper." The 
three men then rose, and the ladies left the room. 

The sequel was, to say the least, remarkable. Some six 
months later Matthew Arnold, then in the prime of life, 
and to all appearance in robust health, died suddenly of 
heart disease. And hardly had we recovered from the 
shock of this terrible news, than we learnt from the papers 

that E. S was found dead in his bed, with an empty 

revolver by his side ! He was a clever young fellow, and 
had dramatised with immense success a novel by an 
authoress now famous, but then comparatively unknown ; 

"POMONA." 1882 
By permission of A . Tooth and Sons 

i88s] SUPERSTITION OR ? 185 

but no sooner was it put on the stage than the authoress, 
who afterwards dramatised it herself, compelled him to with- 
draw his play. Then, in a fit of the blues, he wandered off 
to America to hide his grief, ultimately reaching New York, 
where his life was ended : whether by his own hand or that 
of another it is impossible to say. The most skilled detectives 
of New York were baffled in their inquiry, though inclined to 
favour the theory of murder. 

After this our thoughts naturally flew to Edgar Dawson, 
the last of the daring three. He was a very dear friend of 
mine, with whom I had corresponded for many years, and 
happily I could assure my friends that he, at least, had out 
lived the fatal yean He had gone out to Australia for the 
benefit of his health, and in his last letter he told me he was 
coming home again by the Quetta, a steamer that, leaving 
Melbourne on February i8th, was already on its way to 
England. But, alas, that steamer never reached its destina 
tion ! It foundered on one of the thousand reefs that skirt 
the coast of New Guinea, and not a single soul was left to 
tell the tale. 

And now what shall be said to these things? The facts 
are exactly as I have stated them, and are only too well 
known to many now living. The conclusion to be drawn 
from them I leave to my readers. For myself, I am content 
to state what I know, without attempting " to point a moral 
or adorn a tale." 



<c Bubbles " The model The true history of the picture Ignorant criticism 

Marie Corelli's mistake Her apology The artist's model The Grosvenor 
Exhibition, 1886 Millais meets "The Huguenot "again "Mercy" Millais* 

love for the Highlands and its people Autumn and winter landscapes An 

artist taking hints " The Old Garden " Third portrait of Mr. Gladstone 
Mr. Gladstone's letter The National Portrait Gallery A strong appeal 
"Dew-drenched Furze." * 

COME we now to " Bubbles," one of the last pictures of 
1885, and now familiar to all the English-speaking world. 
Spielmann says of it : " This world-famous picture, so happy 
in inspiration (and so keenly adopted for commercial pur 
poses), spread over the world by the million by illustrated 
newspaper, print-dealer, and soap manufacturer, is a far 
higher class of painting than it has become the fashion 
to assume. It has frequently been called a ' pot-boiler ' ; 
but it is forgotten that 'pot-boilers,' whatever the motive 
of production, are usually better and more freely-painted 
pictures than those which are more deliberately thought out 
and more restrainedly executed. In this case the painting 
of the head is pure, rapid, and sweet in touch, without any 
torturing of the colours; and at least it may be said that it 
introduced, through one man's initiative (and he not Millais), 
a revolution in favour of ' artistic advertisement.' " 

And, in the main, Spielmann is right. The picture was 
not, however, in any sense a " pot-boiler," nor was it painted 
with any idea of the commercial purpose to which it was 
ultimately turned. Millais painted it simply and solely for 
his own pleasure. He was very fond of his little grandson, 
Willie James a singularly beautiful and most winning 
child and seeing him one day blowing soap-bubbles 
through a pipe, he thought what a dainty picture he would 
make, and at once set to work to paint him, bubbles and all. 
Willie, then about four years of age, was delighted to sit. 


" BUBBLES." 1886 
By permission of A . Tooth and Sons 

i88 5 ] "BUBBLES" 189 

He would, perhaps, hear some more of those charming fairy 
tales that his grandfather was so fond of telling him ? And 
he did. The sitting brought enjoyment to them both, and 
the portrait was finished in an incredibly short space of 
time a speaking likeness of the child, without any flattery 
whatever. Only the soap bubbles remained to be added. 
And here a difficulty arose. Bubbles (as Millais liked to 
paint them) are too evanescent for portraiture ; so he had a 
sphere of crystal made, and got from this exactly the lights 
and colours of its aerial counterpart. 

Shortly afterwards Sir William Ingram came to the studio, 
and falling in love with the picture bought it for the Ilhis- 
trated London News. Other pictures,, such as " Cinderella," 
"Puss in Boots," "Little Mrs. Gamp," and " Cherry Ripe," 
had been previously disposed of in like manner, and artisti 
cally reproduced as supplements to that paper or the Graphic ; 
and knowing that the purchasers would do justice to his work, 
as they had done before, Millais handed it over without any 
concern as to its fate, or that of the copyright that, of course, 
went with it. 

After using it as a supplement to their paper, the pro 
prietors sold the picture (as they had every right to do) to 
Messrs. Pears. And now Mr. Barrett, Messrs. Pears' 
manager, appeared upon the scene. To my father's aston 
ishment he called at the studio one morning with specimens 
of the coloured engraving that they proposed to publish as 
an advertisement of their wares. My father was furious. 
He protested strongly against this utilisation of his art; 
but knowing that he had no power to prevent their using the 
picture in any way they liked, he at last consented to look 
at the specimens. Their excellence tended somewhat to 
assuage his wrath ; he admitted, as he was bound to do, that 
the work was admirably done, and with an expression of his 
regret at the purpose to which it was to be turned the inter 
view ended. Clearly, therefore, no blame attached to him; 
and as to Messrs. Pears, I cannot but feel that we ought to 
be grateful to them for their spirited departure from the 
beaten track of advertisers. The example they set has 
tended to raise the character of our illustrated advertisements, 
whether in papers or posters, and may possibly lead to the 
final extinction of such atrocious vulgarities as now offend 
the eye at every turn. 

The advertisement appeared ; and then some of the smaller 


fry of the Press, "the little buzzing things that stink and 
sting," began to whine about the " degradation of Art," of 
which, in their ignorance, they found Millais guilty. These 
attacks he treated with contempt, like a famous predecessor 
who shifted his trumpet and only took snuff. 

But presently a more formidable antagonist raised her 
lance against him. In her brilliant novel, The Sorrows of 
Satan, Marie Corelli made one of her characters say : " I am 
one of those who think the fame of Millais as an artist was 
marred when he degraded himself to the level of painting the 
little green boy blowing bubbles of Pears' soap. That was 
an advertisement, and that very incident in his career, trifling 
as it seems, will prevent his ever standing on the dignified 
height of distinction with such masters in Art as Romney, 
Sir Peter Lely, Gainsborough, and Reynolds." 

A nasty hit this, and one that Millais had hardly expected 
from a lady who had so often complained of the attacks 
upon her own works; and having some slight acquaintance 
with her, he sent her a statement of the facts, asking jocosely, 
"What, in the name of your ' Satan,' do you mean by saying 
what is not true ? " 

Her reply was at once generous and characteristic. I am 
permitted to give it in full, seeing that her book was read by 
thousands of people who may never have heard of the 
correction she made in later editions. 

From Miss Marie Corelli. 


"December 24$, 1895. 

"DEAR SIR JOHN MILLAIS, Your letter has had the effect 
of a sudden bomb thrown in upon the calm of my present 
sea-side meditations ; but I have rallied my energies at last, 
and I assure you in the name of Satan, and all other fallen 
and risen angels, that I meant no harm in the remark I put 
into Geoffrey Tempest's mouth concerning you. It is out of 
the high and faithful admiration I have for you, as a king 
amongst English painters, that I get inwardly wrathful when 
ever I think of your ' Bubbles ' in the hands of Pears as a 
soap advertisement. Gods of Olympus! I have seen and 
loved the original picture the most exquisite and dainty 
child ever dreamed of, with the air of a baby poet as well as 
of a small angel and I look upon all Pears' posters as gross 

i88s] AN APOLOGY 191 

libels, both of your work and you. I can't help it; I am 
made so. I hate all blatant advertisement; but, of course, 
I could not know (not being behind the scenes) that you had 
not really painted it for Pears. Now the ' thousands of poor 
people ' you allude to are no doubt very well-meaning in their 
way, but they cannot be said to understand painting; and 
numbers of them think you did the picture solely for Pears, 
and that it is exactly like the exaggerated poster. Of course 
it makes me angry even spiteful and I confess to being 
angry with you (not knowing the rights of the matter) for 
letting Pears have it * Bubbles ' should hang beside Sir 
Joshua's ' Age of Innocence ' in the National Gallery, where 
the poor people could go and see it with the veneration that 
befits all great Art. I hope you will forgive me my excess 
of zeal ; for now that I know you had nothing to do in the 
c soap business,' I will transfer my wrath to the dealer, and 
pray you to accept my frank apologies. The passage shall 
be altered and put straight in the next edition of Satan. In 
the interim I send you as a Christmas-card the portrait of my 
small sweetheart, the little boy you admired, who personated 
' Bubbles ' at the tableaux at Queen's Hall last spring. 

" He was a trifle big for the part, and the photographer 
has not posed him with absolute correctness; but still, it 
makes a pretty picture. I hope I may bring him again to 
see you some day. He still talks in solemn tones of c the 
great Sir John Millais,' and said to his mother, ' You know 
it is quite true, mother, Sir John did speak to me' as if he 
fancied there might be some doubt cast on the event We 
are staying here till Christmas is over, and hope to return to 
town next Sunday. 

" With regards, and once more begging your pardon for 
my impulsive remark, which arose only out of excess of 
honour for your work, 

" Believe me 

" Very sincerely yours, 


An apology so ample and so charmingly conveyed could 
not fail of hearty acceptance by my father. In subsequent 
editions of the book the offending words were expunged, and 
Miss Corelli has ever since been regarded as a friend of the 


Returning now to the more immediate subject of this 
work, there was, somewhere about this time, an amusing 
scene at Palace Gate that I well remember. My father was 
on the look-out for a model for one of Shakespeare's heroines 
that he intended to paint, and while we were sitting at lunch 
the butler announced that a lady had called to see him on the 
subject. Being engaged in an interesting conversation with 
Matthew Arnold, my father said to me, " Here, Johnnie, run 
down and see if she will do." I accordingly went downstairs, 
and found myself in the presence of one of the most beauti 
ful women I have ever seen. "Well, do you think I shall 
do?" she said, after some preliminary conversation. "Oh, 
certainly, 1 ' I replied. "Come at ten o'clock on Monday 

About five minutes later in came the butler again. 
" Another lady downstairs, please, Sir John." " Oh, go 
along and see her too, Johnnie," said my father impatiently. 
I went, and, behold ! another lovely creature, whose charms 
almost rivalled those of the first applicant. After a short 
interview, she said, " When may I come ? " " Ten o'clock 
on Monday morning," I replied, and went back to the dining- 
room. By this time, however, my father had flown, and not 
until next day could I tell him of the success of my mission. 
Then, in glowing terms, I painted to him the charms of the 
two models I had engaged ; but, to my surprise, he did not 
seem at all pleased. Forgetting for the moment his instruc 
tions to me, he had himself engaged two other models for 
ten o'clock on Monday morning, and all I got as he walked 
off to his studio was, "Ah I that's the worst of sending 
young fellows like you to interview pretty girls. You'd 
engage every blessed houri that stepped inside the place, 
if you got the chance!" 

When Monday came all the four ladies turned up ; but, 
following the example of the "wise child who goes out of 
the room to laugh when the old man has hit his thumb with 
a hammer," I refrained from entering the studio that morning. 
Enough for me to learn, as I did a little later on, that one of 
my ladies Miss Dolan, a favourite model of Lord Leighton's 
had been selected. 

In 1886 came the exhibition of Millais' collected works at 
the Grosvenor Gallery, about which Mr. F. G. Stephens 
kindly sends me the following notes : 




" Millais was very much interested in the arrangement of 
his pictures at the first great collection of them, which was 
made at the Grosvenor Gallery in 1886. On this occasion it 
was at first intended to hang them in chronological order, 
beginning, for instance, with the portrait of Mr. Wyatt, of 
Oxford, and the 'Isabella' of 1849, an <i ending with 'The 
Ruling Passion' of 1885. Part of this intention was carried 
out; but when Millais saw that, however instructive the 
arrangement might be, it resulted in that which was by no 
means decorative as a whole, he cried out with characteristic 
energy, denounced the very notion of such a scheme, and 
insisted on the works being regrouped, the earlier works 
except ' The Huguenot,' being relegated to the small room of 
the gallery, and the larger ones disposed according to their 
colouration and their tone schemes on the walls of the chief 
room. It was while compiling the notes embodied in the 
catalogue of the exhibition all the proofs of which he care 
fully corrected that I told him how according to Northcote, 
who had the fact from Richardson, to whom an old lady while 
sitting to him for her portrait related it, that when very 
young she had sat to Van Dyck. Richardson learnt from 
her that at that time, and while they were but recently 
painted, all the portraits she saw in Van Dyck's studio were 
very much lighter, brighter, and less mellow than they were 
even in Northcote's days that is more than a hundred and a 
quarter years ago. Millais was deeply interested in this, and 
told me he should modify his practice accordingly. It was at 
this epoch that ' The Huguenot,' which he had not seen for 
more than thirty years, was brought to London in order to 
be exhibited again. The case it travelled in was opened in 
my presence, and while Millais was in the gallery; so I 
called him to look at his masterpiece. He came, and having 
the panel released from the frame he took it in his hands, 
and studied the surface of the picture with the keenest 
interest and most searching attention. Nothing could exceed 
the force of this regard. He called upon me to notice some 
characteristics of the handling, and reminded me of various 
technical details in it which, as I had often seen him at work 
upon the panel in the Gower Street studio during 1853, were 
still present in my memory. He laughed with pleasure 
when, recognising certain trial-touches with a sable brush 
made upon the white margin of the panel (which the frame 
originally concealed), he told me a ludicrous story connected 


with Miss Ryan, the model who sat to him. It was with 
evident pride and many happy memories that, putting the 
picture back again into its frame, he said : ' Really, I did 
not paint so badly in those days, old man ! ' He was 
especially delighted because the panel, having been in the 
country since it left the Academy of 1853, was then (1883) 
perfectly unchanged in all respects. ' I used/ he said, ' such 
a colour for this, and such for that. It was risky, per 
haps ; but there, you see, it 's all right now. 5 I never saw 
him more deeply moved anent his own work than on this 

Amongst the pictures of 1886 probably none gave Millais 
more trouble than " Mercy," otherwise " St. Bartholomew s 
Day, 1572." Judging by the following letter, he seems to 
have got quite tired of it before it was finished, and dis 
heartened at finding less important works preferred by the 
public : 

To Mr. Briton Riviere, R. A. 


"July nth, 1886. 

" DEAR RIVIERE, I have done the picture. That is, I 
have only, I hope, small things to complete it. 

" I am sometimes happy over it, but oftener wretched. 
I would like you to see it if you can call any day and any 
time before four. Yours sincerely, 


" People pass it, and go to a little child-picture, and cry 
'How sweet!' Always the way with any attempt at some 
thing serious. 

" Bring Calderon with you if he cares to see an old hand's 
last performance. I feel a very poor old thing." 

In this picture the Marchioness of Granby sat for the 
figure of the nun, and the Rev. Richard Lear for the monk, 
my brother Geoffroy posing as the Romanist enthusiast. 

In the following year he painted my sister Sophie twice 

in powder as " Clarissa," after the manner of Gainsborough ; 
and in fancy dress as " Punchinella " a charmingly graceful 
portrait. Then came the autumn, when, weary of work, 

By permission of Thomas McLean and Son- 



he fled away to his beloved Murthly and the sport that 
awaited him ^ there, to say nothing of certain landscapes 
that he had it in his mind to paint so soon as the shooting 
season was over; for by this time he knew by heart the 
many sylvan beauties of the place, and had long thought of 
the charming pictures that some of them would make. Nor 
were these the only considerations that urged him north 
wards. He knew the Highland people as few Englishmen 
are ever privileged to do, and no one appreciated more than 
he their many estimable qualities ; knew, too, the warmth of 
their welcome whenever he appeared among them ; and as to 
his own people, the gillies and others who waited upon his 
pleasure, no man had ever more devoted servants. In Walt 
Whitman's happy phrase, he "had the pass-key to their 
hearts/' and was never more at home than in the midst of 
these faithful followers, 

One among many instances of their thoughtful considera 
tion it was always a great pleasure to him to recall. In the 
winter of this year a terrific gale and snowstorm raged 
throughout the night, sweeping the valley of the Tay from 
end to end; and in this valley some two miles from 
Birnam Hall was his shelter hut, in which he had left his 
picture of "Christmas Eve, 1887," with the wet paint turned 
towards the wall. In great anxiety he waited till the morn 
ing, when he hastened to the spot, expecting to find the hut 
and its contents blown clean away. To his delight, however, 
there it was, standing four-square to the winds of heaven; 
and there, too, was the village carpenter who built it, a dear 
old man who lived four miles away, and "fearing for the 
hoose," had come all the way down at midnight in the 
blinding gale and made it thoroughly secure ! I am sorry 
indeed that the name of this brave and benevolent old fellow 
has escaped my memory. 

This was the second of the well-known series of Murthly 
landscapes, the first being " Murthly Moss," a picture begun 
and finished in the previous autumn. Before commencing 
this work (Murthly Moss) a day or two was spent in looking 
around for the best point of view a quest in which my 
brother Geoffroy's skill as a photographer proved a most 
valuable help, enabling the artist to see, side by side, the 
various views that specially attracted his attention, and finally 
to select what he thought best. The wooden hut was then 
put up, and the work begun. 


Needless to say with what loving care this picture was 
painted. The painting speaks for itself. The reeds and 
marsh plants in particular are rendered with all the force 
and precision of the old Pre-Raphaelite days, and nothing 
is left undone to convey to the beholder a faithful portrait 
of the scene. Says Mr. Spielmann an authority whom it 
is always a pleasure to quote, whether one agrees with him 
or not "If not a 'great landscape' in the conventional 
sense, it is a very great transcript from Nature full of the 
light peculiar to the Scottish marshes, and full of atmosphere 
an exquisitely true portrait of the scene on a late 
September afternoon. It must be admitted that the picture 
does not look at its best in the Academy ; seen in its own 
home its more delicate beauties become apparent, and the 
more it is gazed at and the longer it is known, the more 
does it grow upon and delight the spectator. Every bit 
of the landscape is truthfully rendered the sedgy fore 
ground, the middle distance of trees, and the distant hills ; 
all as carefully and lovingly measured and drawn, said 
Millais, as if he had been working and stippling from the 
cast in the Academy schools. There is a unity of conception 
and a harmony of sentiment that compensate for the lack of 
deliberate composition ; and the charm of the silvery-golden 
tones adds to the grace of the whole." 

The critic is quite right. As seen in the Academy, the 
picture lost half its charm. The perfect peace and the 
mellow softness of the landscape demand that it should be 
seen apart from all others, as it was in the artist's studio 
and is now in Sir Cuthbert Quilter's house. Thus isolated, 
the sweet poetry of the composition never fails to make 
itself felt, raising it at once to its rightful rank as one of the 
finest, if not the finest, of Millais' landscapes. 

When the next picture (" Christmas Eve, 1887 ") was taken 
up winter was already casting her mantle over the Northern 
hills. There was a keenness and a crispness in the air that 
filled sensitive southerners with thoughts of home; but for 
Millais, inured as he was to the rigours of the northern 
climate, winter had no terrors. He loved the bracing air of 
the mountains, and above all, those fine still days that so 
often follow in the wake of St. Martin's summer, and hardly 
noticed as it came the change to biting frost and falling snow. 
With such protection as his hut afforded, he went steadily on 
with his work until, on Christmas Eve itself, the final touch 

3 * 


> N 

J x 



was added to his painting a view of the old Castle of 
Murthly as seen from the north-west. 

The two landscapes of 1888, " Murthly Water" and " The 
Old Garden," were painted at Murthly in the autumn of that 
year, the former being a view of the river as seen from the 
Stenton bank looking up towards Birnam at a spot where the 
artist used to stop and lunch after fishing. This was the beat 
he specially reserved for himself ; and every day when out 
door sport was possible, he worked it from end to end, 
starting at the head of " Tronnach," a long swirling flat, 
out of which he took some twenty or thirty fish every 

In the picture my brother Geoffroy and Miller, the fisher 
man, are seen seated on the shingle arranging the rods and 
tackle. The whole landscape is suffused in bright autumn 
sunlight, in which the red leaves of the maple are brilliantly 
conspicuous ; but the work is not generally considered to be 
in the artist's best manner. Mr. Spielmann speaks of it as 
"perhaps Sir John's poorest landscape," while Mr. H. W. B. 
Davis, R.A., probably our best living painter of sunny land 
scapes, is loud in praise of its wonderful colouring and perfect 
truth to Nature. The fact is, it was painted rather for the 
artist's pleasure in the place itself than with any view to a 
great picture ; and if he himself could have had a voice in 
the matter, it would probably, like many others, have been 
excluded from the exhibition of 1898. The Academy, how 
ever, were not to blame for this omnium gatherum of Millais' 
works. In order to obtain certain pictures indispensable to 
the collection, they were in one or two cases obliged to admit 
other works of no interest to the general public, however 
valuable in themselves as fulfilling the purposes for which 
they were painted. 

It was amusing to hear the comments of the public on 
these multifarious works. In one room was the portrait of a 
middle-class magnate of unprepossessing exterior, which, for 
diplomatic reasons, Millais had allowed himself to paint ; and 
opposite to it, with his face glued to the canvas, I noticed a 
well-known A.R.A., an old friend of the family. He was 
still there, examining every detail of the work, when I 
returned after a long and careful scrutiny of other pictures ; 
and passing close by him, I ventured to say, "You seem 
deeply interested in that picture." " Yes," he replied, "per- 


haps as much as in any in the exhibition, which is saying a 
great deal. It is a marvel of technique, and I am taking 
lessons. I have to draw these sort of people, you know." 

Says a well-known author, " there is nothing good or God 
like in this world but has in it something of infinite sadness." 
Without necessarily endorsing this sentiment, I may fairly 
point to u The Old Garden " as a presentment of the pathos 
of Nature under the garb of a homely landscape a picture 
always associated in my mind with Fred Walker's master 
piece, " The Harbour of Refuge." 

The garden is that of the old castle at Murthly, then in 
habited by Sir Douglas Stewart ; and near at hand is the 
park where " Christmas Eve " was painted. To emphasize the 
tone of sadness he sought to convey, Millais at first painted 
in the figure of a widow (and I think also a child) wandering 
amidst the scenes of bygone happiness ; but as he could not 
get the figures to his satisfaction, he wisely painted them out. 
Another difficulty was how to break the broad expanse of the 
terrace in the immediate foreground, and this he got over by 
introducing part of a beautiful old fountain which he dis 
covered in another corner of the garden. This is the only 
feature which is not in the scene as it actually exists to-day. 

In the Nineteenth Century of March, 1898, Mr. Claude 
Phillips speaks of this picture as " surely the artist's master 
piece in this branch of his practice. Not only are the rich 
and beautiful motives, so difficult in their very richness to 
combine into a harmonious whole, handled with consummate 
skill ; not only is the point of view chosen with a rare and 
admirable intuition, but the scene in its simple, homely beauty 
is bathed in an atmosphere of peace and love indefinably, 
yet none the less surely, enveloping and spiritualising that 
which is presented with a charm so unaffected and yet so 

Perhaps I may be excused for introducing here some lines 
sent to the artist by a friend at Chelsea in 1889. If not of 
the highest literary merit, they at least reflect the popular 
view of the picture, as expressed in the newspapers of the 


" Old garden, relic of an age 
Before seclusion passed away, 

An old-world grace enwraps you yet. 






isss] "THE OLD GARDEN" 207 

" A poet's dream is here revealed 

The vision of a Painter great* 
You shade his brow with laurels fresh, 
To bloom through centuries that wait. 

" Quaint hedges cut in rigid lines, 

Where Time has walked with slower pace, 
And years have marked with gentler hand 
The changing seasons on your face. 

" The dial where were traced the hours 

By generations long since dead. 
And time-worn fount that still reflects 
The glory of the summer fled. 

" The peace enshrined at sunset hours ; 

The night, delaying long to fall, 
Has faintly spread with loving care 
A mystic glamour over all. 

" The glow, we say, will fade to gloom, 

And wait expectant, half in fear ; 

The dark will come, and we shall see 

The ruddy window-lights appear. 

" But no ; your crown of peace remains 

Embalmed for us in colours fair; 
Nor need he fear, who wrought this charm 

With Botticelli to compare. 
"Chelsea, 1889." 

" Shelling Peas " was one of the " small and early " pictures 
of this year, and was presented to Leighton in return for his 
kind present of a statuette that caught Millais' eye while taking 
a glance at the objects in the sculpture room the day before the 
opening of the Academy. Meeting Leighton a moment after 
wards, he told him how he admired a delicate little bronze 
of a young girl turning to look round at a frog or some 
other reptile that had startled her. " I am so glad you like 
that," said the President, laughing ; " I did it." And when 
the exhibition closed, he sent it to Millais as a present, 
with a charming letter such as he so well knew how to 
write. The picture is now in the possession of Mr. James 

The summer of 1889 found him at work on his third and 
last portrait of Mr. Gladstone, taken on this occasion with 
his grandson, the eldest son of Mr. W. H. Gladstone. This 
was a gold en- wedding gift to Mr. and Mrs. Gladstone from 
the women members of the Liberal party, the subscriptions 


being from one penny upwards. After its exhibition in the 
Royal Academy in 1890, Millais repainted the head of the 
statesman, and the picture was then forwarded to the Count 
ess of Aberdeen, on behalf of the donors. Its receipt was 
kindly acknowledged by Mr. Gladstone in the following 
letter : 

From Mr. Gladstone. 

"July 25/4, 1889. 

"My DEAR SIR J. MILLAIS, As a rule I dare not give 
an opinion on a portrait of myself; but it seems to me that 
the work which, to my surprise, I found finished and hung 
this morning, and which you have accomplished with so 
wonderfully small an allotment of sittings, is the most exact 
and living likeness of me that you have yet produced. 

" The picture of my dear little grandson is delightful. 

" The book was ready for your messenger, but you have 
dispensed with it. 

"I now descend to a mean request that my coat may 
revisit me in time for the party on Saturday, 

"And I remain, sincerely yours, 


u My wife joins in thanks." 

Millais painted also a half-length replica of Mr. Gladstone's 
portrait, and as a Christmas gift presented it to his wife, who 
thus replied : 

From Mrs. Gladstone. 


" January 2nd. 

"How shall I thank you half enough, dear Sir John, 
for that glorious present! Coming as it does as a New 
Year's gift, words are very weak to express all I feel. This 
picture will go down as an heirloom in our family, whilst your 
name will make it very precious. 

" Thank you with all my heart for the pleasure you have 
given me for the second time, in which I include my 
children's thanks. - Yours gratefully, 


" I hope we shall have the pleasure of seeing you and Lady 
Millais and any of your family on Wednesday evening." 


At this time the establishment of a National Portrait 
Gallery and the safe housing of the national pictures were 
much in Millais' mind, as will be seen from his letter to 
the Times (published on April 25th, 1889), and Sir George 
Scharfs letter of May 6th. 

To the Editor of the " Times" 

SiR, As one of the trustees of the National Portrait 
Gallery, may I add a word to Sir Henry Layard's admirable 
letter of the 23rd ? He is only too gentle when he says 
the non-fulfilment of the promise made to the trustees by 
successive Governments " approaches a scandal." It is a 
scandal outright. 

" In the Upper House, Lords Hardinge and Lamington 
have done their best to urge the Government to give us 
a site and sufficient means to erect a suitable building, but 
unfortunately, in the Commons, although we have good 
friends, we have no persistent and troublesome advocate, 
no importunate widower to help us. With such assistance, 
we might obtain what we ask. How long the public will 
submit to half their property being shunted to a temporary 
habitation in the East of London, the other half stowed 
away in the cellars of Great George Street, Westminster, 
I do not know, of course. I feel sure smaller and poorer 
European States would not be guilty of such unpardonable 
and mischievous delay. 

" Your obedient servant, 


" 2 Palace Gate, Kensington, 
" April 24//z." 

From Sir George Scharf. 



"May 6th, 1889. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, One thousand thanks for your 
most kind note. The great heat of the gallery and my 
physical debility compelled me to retire after the Prince 
of Wales' speech. I tried to wander through the galleries 
and to look at the pictures, but all in vain, I was so weak ; 
ii 14 


so I retired altogether. Next morning Lord Hardinge, 
with his accustomed kindness, sent me a letter conveying 
the important news of Lord Salisbury's announcement. 
Your thunder and Layard's bluster did it. You have been 
most faithful to our interest, and always a foremost champion 
when wanted. 

" Lord Hardinge said that Lord Salisbury's announce 
ment took his breath away. But when Lord H. repeated 
it to me, instead of taking away my breath, it added to my 
life. I now feel I have something to live for. 

"I have just returned from Bethnal Green with Lord 
Hardinge. He has been making himself better acquainted 
with facts than hitherto. I gladly thank you, foremost 
amongst others, for providing me a still further interest 
in life. 

" Ever gratefully yours, 


In a letter to his wife, dated May 7th, 1889, Millais 
calls attention to his letter in the Times, which, he says, 
" has contributed to the realisation of our wishes in regard 
to a National Portrait Gallery. At the Royal Academy 
dinner I sat next to Arthur Balfour, and he admitted I was 
c sponsor 5 to the gift ; indeed, I have had thanks all round,, 
and a most flattering letter from Scharf, the director, who 
says that my letter has done it. Layard also was most kind 
about it." 

"Twa Bairns" formed the subject of his next picture. 
They were Frederick and Mary Stewart Phillips, children 
of Mr. Frederick Phillips, of Godshill, Isle of Wight, and 
were painted in Highland dress, forming, as Mr. Spielmann 
says, "one of the most attractive groups ever painted by 
the artist. To ensure accuracy in the tartan, Sir John 
borrowed from the Stuart Exhibition, then in progress, one 
of Prince Charlie's own to paint from." 

In the autumn of 1889 Millais went to the North, deter 
mined to go in for sport alone. He would not look at his 
paints, he said; and he stuck to his word until one fine day 
in November the potent voice of the wood spirits compelled 
him to change his mind. In the early morning the long 
grass bearded with dew lay at his feet, and all around were 

By permission of Mrs, Stibbard 


firs, bracken, and gorse bushes, festooned with silver webs, 
that showed a myriad diamonds glittering in the sun. It 
was a fairyland that met his eye, whichever way he looked, 
and under its spell the soul" of the painter was moved 
to immediate action. A large canvas was brought out, 
and presently " Dew-drenched Furze " dawned upon the 

The view was taken from a spot near the old sawmill road 
leading from the factor's house at Murthly to Gellie's 
farm, and the wild moorland around Murthly Moss. This 
road passes straight through " the big wood " a great cover 
of Scotch firs and larches many hundreds of acres in extent, 
and our favourite shooting-ground for capercailzie and roe. 
A little path runs from the head keeper's house parallel 
to the main road, and only a very short distance away, 
and between these Millais found a suitable clearing from 
which he could see exactly what he wanted to paint. It 
was a plucky venture, this grappling with a scene such as 
had probably never been painted before, and ^ might 
possibly prove to be unpaintable; but confident^ his own 
powers, and sustained by the indomitable spirit that had 
enabled him to bring to a successful issue many a task of 
apparently equal difficulty, he went on bravely with his 
work, malgre the discouraging look of the picture in its 
earlier stages and the adverse comments of the family, who, 
all in turn, favoured the artist with their opinions as the 
work progressed. But he himself never faltered in his 
belief in the paintable character of the subject, or in his 
ability to convey to others the charm of its manifold beauties. 
Only a few days before the work was finished was this 
apparent to the critics of his household, whose strictures 
then gave place to paeans of praise. 

There is a cock pheasant standing in the foreground, 
which the critics were particularly hard on, insisting that 
it was a stuffed bird, just smudged into the picture, and that 
the artist had expended no trouble on it. No trouble, 
indeed! Why, that pheasant nearly drove him wild, and 
caused me more than a week's unhappiness. I was with 
him when the picture was painted, and ^ after drawing 
pheasants for him in every conceivable attitude, I caught 
a wild bird and caged it, so that he could study it himself. 
This he did, with the cage placed beside the picture, where 
he kept it several days. At last he became so bothered 


with it that he asked me to paint the bird myself, thinking 
that in the position he had selected it would add repose 
to the scene. I accordingly painted it, spending two days 
over the work; but the result was not satisfactory. The 
bird looked hard and flat, and in the end my father spent 
half an hour in painting over it, making it quite a different 

" LILACS." 1886 
By permission of Thomas Ag-netv and Sons 



Portraits of Millais An American "double" A counterfeit friend Personal 
habits The sacred umbrella, and what became of it The advantage of a 
strong voice k ' Old Gallipots '" Books and latter-day illustration Chess 
An acrostic Lines on Royal Academy Exhibition " Twa Dogs " Invitation 
to H. S. Marks, R.A. ^ In Memoriam Robert Burns" Begging-letters A 
draughty situation Autograph hunters Lines for music A visit to Millais* 
birthplace Rev. Armstrong Hall on Millais and the influence of his northern 
home Spielmann on his life and death. 

AND first of Millais' personality. Portraits of him at all 
stages of his life are happily preserved to us. One in the 
possession of my sister Mary was painted by John Phillip, R.A., 
when a student at the Academy ; and on comparing it with 
another portrait by the same hand, when Millais was thirteen 
years of age, it would seem to be somewhat earlier in point 
of date. This second portrait, in which he appears as u a 
Highland Page," was intended, says a critic, " as a study 
for the greater work, ' Bruce about to receive the Sacrament 
on the morning previous to the battle of Bannockburn ' (Royal 
Academy, 1843). Millais would tell how Phillip (not yet a 
member of the Royal Academy) entered the life school of 
the Academy and, looking about among the students, asked 
the little fellow with the golden hair if he would come and 
sit to him, which, of course, the boy was delighted to do. 
A copy of this head in Phillip's picture (of which the original 
is now in the Mechanics 5 Institute at Brechin) was made by 
Sir George Reid, P.R.S.A., for Millais at his request." * 

A fine pencil drawing of him was done in 1850 by Charles 
Collins, for Mr. Combe, of Oxford, who bequeathed it to 
Oxford University; and in 1853, when Millais had attained 
twenty-four, his friend Holman Hunt also made a sketch of 

* As a boy Millais also sat to Frith for Anne Page's little son, in " The Merry 
Wives of Windsor/' 




him in pencil, that some years afterwards appeared in the 
Magazine of Art. 

In 1854 Munro, the sculptor, produced and exhibited at 
the Academy a fine medallion showing the head of the artist 
in bas-relief; and, according to Spielmann, John Phillip 
painted him again in 1859; but of this portrait I have no 
personal knowledge. 

MILLAIS. 1854 

In 1863 appeared the fine statuette by Marochetti, along 
with one of my mother, modelled by him at the same time ; 
and in 1871 Mr. G. F. Watts, R. A., painted a splendid like 
ness of Millais as he appeared at that time a quiet, even 
sombre work, but full of character and most masterly in 

In 1880 came Millais' portrait of himself for the Uffizi 
Gallery at Florence. It shows him as he was then, in the 
prime of life and health, and is generally admitted to be by 



far the most satisfactory portrait of the artist In the words 
of a critic, " holding its own with singular power among the 
auto-portraits of the great masters of the world, from the 
mighty painters of Italy down to the present day." 

The bust modelled by Onslow Ford, R. A., in 1*896, is about 

MILLAIS. 1854 

as fine a piece of work as that great sculptor has ever done. 
It was absolutely true to life almost painfully true to those 
who knew Millais in his latter days ; and, as a critic says, 
" It is a splendidly decorative work, showing the President 
in the robes of his office, with the chain and medal across 
his shoulders, and the Prussian Order, c Pour le Merite/ 
about his neck. Although, as may be seen, it was wrought 
when the shadow of death was already enveloping the 


painter, so that the geniality of the man has given way in 
some measure to the suggestion of suffering, dominated by 
the strenuousness of life it remains, in its finely-observed 
and lovingly-modelled head, one of the three principal works 
left to show what manner of man he was. In the exhibition 
(1898) it was accorded a position in a room by itself, so 
placed that it might meet the eye of the visitor with its keen 
and saddened look, as he passed from the contemplation of 
the master's works." 

As to photographs, the latest of all was taken by Elliott 
and Fry in 1896; and an admirable likeness it is, though 
tinged, of course, with the sadness observable in the sculp 
tured bust of that year. But to those who knew him best, 
even more interesting is a photograph taken some years ago 
at Birnam Hall, by Mackenzie, the local photographer. There 
I see my father, standing in the porch with a pipe in his 
mouth, just as he used to do after breakfast, before strolling 
off to his beloved river; and so happy is the likeness to the 
man himself that one can almost see in it the merry twinkle 
of his eye. 

He was proud of his height just over six feet and would 
say to us sometimes, " If any of you boys show signs of being- 
taller than your father, I '11 punch his head." Like other 
men, great and small, he had his " double" several doubles 
it would almost seem. As a young man he certainly bore 
a close resemblance to Lord Leighton, and was more than 
once accosted by mistake for that gentleman ; but in later 
years his likeness to the late Sir Robert Loder and Lord 
Wemyss was commonly remarked upon, though the one was 
a shorter and the other a taller man than himself. On the 
other side of the Atlantic was another man who must have 
been uncommonly like him, judging from the following letter 
and the photograph enclosed, though their respective sur 
names would hardly suggest a relationship : 

From Dr. Piko. 


" May i4//z, 1879. 

" MY DEAR SIR, Time is doubtless very valuable to you. 
This letter (which I hope you will not deem intrusive) shall 
therefore be brief. 

" The gist : a lady patient, recently returned from an 




European tour, insists, with all the characteristic ardour of 
her sex, that ' Millais,' the world-renowned artist, and the 
writer hereof (a practising physician not altogether obscure) 
1 resemble each other wonderfully ! look nearly enough alike 
to be twins,' etc. 

" I have received her statement c^tm grano salis, believing 
that while in dear old England distance (from her native 
shores) lent enchantment to her mental view. The said 
lady's vehement importunateness, however, has at last over 
come her native modesty, and at her request I enclose a 
counterfeit presentment of self. If my patient's enthusiasm 
has outwitted her judgment, I trust this scrawl, with en 
closure, will not greatly annoy you. If, on the contrary, 
the fact as stated by her obtains, then it may possibly amuse 
you to know that there lives a man, three thousand miles 
away, who is physically by a remote possibility, psycho 
logicallyyour alter ego. 

" Very respectfully, 


The photograph sent was certainly that of a smaller man> 
but exceedingly like Millais. 

Enough, perhaps, has now been said as to his personal 
appearance, unless, as Carlyle insists, his 
clothes must be taken into account. In 
that matter, though his apparel proclaimed 
the man, it certainly did not proclaim the 
artist. He hated the affectation of the 
long-haired and velvet-coated tribe, whose 
exterior is commonly more noticeable than 
their Art, and just dressed like other men 
according to circumstances of time and 
place, only too happy to escape the obser 
vation of strangers as he moved about 
the world. 

His escapes in this way not infrequently MILLAIS, BY HIMSELF. 
afforded him considerable amusement. l879 

Travelling one day from Perth to Dunkeld, he got into a 
railway carriage in which were already seated three young 
men of the Dundreary order, all strangers to him. On 
passing Murthly station, one of them said, " Oh, Murthly ; 
that 's where Millais, the artist, lives. Seen his pictures 
this year?" "Yaas," drawled another, "and I don't think 


much of him since he 's taken to advertising soap. I say, 
Charlie, you know Millais, don't you ? " " Oh, intimately? 
said number three, calmly polishing his eye-glass; ^ shall 
probably drop in there later on." But, alas for Millais, the 
" later on" time never arrived. He lost for ever the chance 
-of entertaining .this " Truthful James." 

The following letter from William Black, the well-known 
novelist, also afforded him amusement. 


" May 142$. 

" DEAR SIR JOHN, If you care to see how you look in 
a new sphere, you might send for a copy of The Cutter and 
Tailor for May (the John Williamson Publishing Company, 
Drury Lane), and you will find an engraved plate with 
yourself and myself standing together as tailors' models. 

"There is also a very complimentary 
reference to yourself in the letterpress; 
but it must not make you too proud. 
" Yours sincerely, 


As to his personal habits, there was little 
perhaps, to distinguish him from others of 
his class who, blessed with good health 
and spirits, get as much enjoyment out of 
life as they can in the intervals of business. 
He rose betimes, and took good care that 
others of his household should do so too; 
but I gather from his letters that in the 
days of his youth he was not quite so 
religiously devoted to early rising as some 
of us were led to believe. Except when 
a clock that ought to have known better 
struck eleven before he got up, he rose 
punctually at half-past ten, and yawned 
over his breakfast in a most unbecoming 
manner ; but when, in later years, young 
olive-branches began to gather around his 
table, pressure of work and the good 
example that poor paterfamilias is always 
expected to set compelled him to bestir 





himself at a much less comfortable hour. Eight o'clock 
was then the order of the day. At that time, or commonly 
much earlier, the cheery voice of the master, emphasised 
by rousing knocks at the sleepers' doors, resounded down 
the corridors ; and woe betide the youngster who failed to 
respond to that signal. At 8.30 to the minute we must all 
be down to breakfast, under peril of a fall in the parental 
barometer and a tiresome lecture on punctuality, with which 
some of us, I am sorry to say, were only too familiar. In 
Scotland, indeed, this rule was even more imperative, any 
violation of it being regarded as betraying a sinful indifference 
to the demands of sport. 

Another peculiarity, too, had the master of the house. 
Though generous and good-natured to the last degree, there 
were two articles of his that he would never allow anyone to 
touch his walking-stick and his umbrella the latter a 
gorgeous creature with a silver knob, which had been given 
to him by an old friend. As children, we all stood in awe of 
that umbrella, no one daring to take the 
smallest liberty with it. But the time 
came when timidity must yield to 
pressure of circumstances. One fine 
morning Geoffroy and I, having been 
promoted to the dignity of Eton jackets 
and top-hats (as we appear in the ac 
companying sketch by my father), must 
needs mark the occasion in becoming 
fashion. ,So, seizing upon the sacred 
" brollie " as a protection against the 
weather, we marched off in our finery 
to our favourite resort, the "Zoo." 
Alas, the day ! Finding that buns failed 
to enliven a stupid bear, we prodded him , up with our only 
weapon, with the result that it was torn into shreds and the 
silver knob horribly mauled by his teeth. All that remained 
of it was the framework, and this we sorrowfully returned 
to its accustomed place in the hall. What followed I need 
hardly relate. Enough to say that, in the punishment of the 
wretched offenders, the mangled remains of the fetich played 
a conspicuous part. 

The carrying power of my father's voice was another 
peculiarity, and one that won him upon one occasion a well- 
deserved compliment. A remarkably pretty girl was staying 


with us at Birnam Hall, and the day after her arrival the 
men of the party fell to discussing her claims to beauty. 
Objections were taken to various points of detail, but my 
father stopped the talk by saying in his emphatic way, 
" Well, you may say what you like. The tout ensemble is 
perfect, and it is many a day since I set eyes on so lovely 
or so nice a girl." At that moment the young lady herself 
appeared, and throwing her arms round his neck, said : " I 
really must give you a kiss, you are such a dear, and certainly 
the only man of taste here." She had heard every word 
that was said, as her bedroom was separated from the dining- 
room only by a wooden wall. 

His bonhomie, indeed, never failed to find favour with the 
fair sex. An amusing illustration of this occurred at a shoot 
ing-lodge in Inverness-shire, where he and two other men, 
old friends of his, were on a visit. A very pretty ingenue 
whose nonsense sometimes verged upon slang was also there, 
and with the privilege of youth and beauty, she assumed an 
almost parental familiarity with the whole party. Two or 
three days after the arrival of Millais and his friends, the 
host asked her what she thought of them. " Well," she said 
candidly, " I don't think much of your two paltry knights, 
but I do like old Gallipots" a subtle allusion, perhaps, not 
only to Millais' profession, but to his weakness for cream 
with his porridge, which had been the subject of a little 
practical joke. He had chaffed his host at breakfast on 
what he called a meagre and miserable supply of this luxury, 
and at night he found in his bed what he thought was a hot 
bottle, but which on further examination turned out to be 
a huge jar of cream, cold and leaky, and labelled "With 

Mr. 's compliments." There was great fun over this 

next morning when he produced the jar and helped himself 
to the contents. 

At home and at leisure, he was always the life and soul 
of the household. Whatever his troubles in the studio and, 
like other artists, he was often sorely worried with his work 
he left them all behind when he joined the family circle, 
and was ever ready for any nonsense that might be going on. 
But it was during his holidays in Scotland that he was 
always at his best. In the intervals of sport he loved to 
bandy words with such ready wits as Mr. Herbert Wilson, 
Mr. Arthur Eden, Sir William Howard Russell, Sir William 
Harcourt, and Sir Henry James, some of whom were 




2 33 

generally amongst his guests ; and when they were there the 
stream of nonsense reached its highest point. 

He was an omnivorous reader, when he had the chance; 
but in London there was little or no time for books. His 
reading there was commonly limited to the daily papers, a 
magazine or two, and one or two weeklies such as Punch y 
The World, and the Illustrated London News. As novelists,, 
Thackeray, Dickens, Anthony Trollope, and Miss Braddon 
were his favourite authors, and in the realm of poetry he was 
thoroughly familiar with the works of Tennyson, Browning,, 
Keats, and Burns; but in 
the later years of his life 
nothing pleased him better 
than a veritable history of 
travels and adventures in 
foreign lands, 

Caton Woodville's draw 
ings in the Illustrated 
London News were an 
especial joy to him, the great 
bulk of that artist's work 
being always of the same 
high quality. " Deuced clever 
fellow, that Woodville. He 'd 
be an R.A. if I had a voice 
the matter," he would 



exclaim when a particularly 
fine example caught his eye. 
And as to Edwin Abbey's 
illustrations in Harpers Magazine^ of the old English songs 
and the plays of Shakespeare, his admiration knew no 
bounds. I think I may say that he frequently urged on 
the Academicians Abbey's right to become an Associate, 
even on the merits of these drawings alone; and that he 
has now attained that honour is perhaps due in some 
measure, at least, to Millais' championship in former years. 
Alfred Parsons' work in Harpers must also be noticed as, 
in Millais' opinion, of the very highest merit. 

In early life my father was devoted to chess, at which he 
became so expert that at the age of twelve he was frequently 
pitted against Harrwitz, one of the finest players of the day; 
and though in later years he seldom found an opponent, he 
loved to work out the problems in the Illustrated London 


News, and every Saturday night he would take the paper up 
to his bedroom for this purpose. 

Acrostics, too, were a great amusement to him. He liked 
to solve those that appeared in The World, and occasionally 
concocted one or two of his own. I append a specimen, the 
solution of which some of my readers may perhaps care to 
find out : 

ist Syllable. 

" Large and small, clothed and bare, 
Smooth, and all colours covered with hair; 
A guard to all nations, a man of note, 
A note itself, and sure in a goat. 
A wrinkle too, if attached to a bird. 
Now don't you know this singular word ? 

2nd Syllable. 

" Go to my second, or throw it away. 
The earth is only a large one they say. 
I 've lodged in the ground, and lodged in the heart, 
I 'm beaten by many, but don't feel the smart. 
The eye, it can see, and is blind as a pup's, 
And sometimes, I know, I am seen in my cups." 

" Here, there, and everywhere, 
Do not for your bruises care." 

" Where 7 s my watch? The Deuce is in it ! 
I had it here this very minute." 

" I cannot see. A sort of haze 
Has spoilt and darkened all my days." 

" Sweet and rank, soft and greasy, 
I make machinery go so easy." 

" Think, before you bend your bow, 
Where the arrow point may go." 

Another pastime of his was writing nonsense verses for 
the amusement of his friends, some few of which, rescued 
at the time from his waste-paper basket, have happily fallen 
into my hands. His description of a private view at the 
Royal Academy (written in or about 1870), and his imitation 
of Burns, I am tempted to give here as illustrations of his 






" First Monday in May 
Is the opening day 
Of the great R.A., 
When the public go. 
But the thing to do 
Is the private view, 
Select and few 
For the Swells, you know. 

Elbow* and push 

Your way through the crush 

To the porter in plush 

At the top of the stair. 

A catalogue he 

Will deliver to thee, 

With bended knee 

And graceful air. 

Then make for the room 

(Through a dismal gloom) 

To the left of the door ; 

And, once you 're inside, 

Go on with the tide. 

Observe the Skyed, 

For you '11 see little more. 

All round you a patter 
Of commonplace chatter, 
Occasional smatter 
And cant about Art ; 
Archbishops and Dooks, 
Dilettantes and Snooks, 
And Beauty who looks 
Especially Smart. 
Every step you will greet 
Friends who say < What a treat ! ' 
As they stand on your feet 
In the hullaballoo. 

Not a moment of peace, 
Or a chance of release. 
You will presently squeeze 
Into gallery 2. 
Portraits here staring, 
Grand effects flaring, 
Animals glaring, 
Hang on the walls. 
Little girls skipping. 
Winter scenes (nipping), 
Lots of Dutch shipping, 
Preparing for squalls. 
Huntsman and hounds, 
Old churches and towns, 
Dons, D.C.L. gowns, 
Are there by the score. 
Birds' nests, pickle-jars, 
Pussy cats, jolly tars, 
Soldiers home from the wars 
Abound evermore. 

Now turn to the right 

The big rooms in light, 

Where the members invite 

Great people to dine. 

Railway station of Smirke's, 

Where they hang their own works, 

Reserving (the Turks) 

To themselves all the Line. 

The gems of the year 

Are supposed to be here ; 

But the critics will sneer 

At the notion, I guess. 

Albeit for size 

They must gain the prize, 

In spite of the wise 

Myrmidons of the Press." 

His parody on Burns originated in this way. In 1870 my 
brothers George and Everett returned from the Continent, 
bringing with them two dachshunds that they hoped would 
command his admiration; but in this they were griev 
ously disappointed. The breed was then little known in 
England, and he could see nothing in it to admire. A year 
or two after that there was a merry party assembled at 
Kepplestone, Mr. MacDonald's seat near Aberdeen ; and the 
conversation turning upon Burns, Millais volunteered a 
parody on "The Twa Dogs," and taking up a sheet of paper, 
produced the following lines. The final rhyme, it will be 



Photograph taken by Mr. Ritpert Potter 

observed, is a little faulty, but not more so than some that 
appear in the original : 

" Twa dogs, I mind, that fash me sair 
A muckle and a mickle beastie 
A crippled form* cretur, rare 
Nae doubt, but bonnie not the leastie ; 
Wi' waddlin' leggies, crook'd and sprawlin', 
And snoot as long as ' Dinnie's ' * caber 
A sort of sandy insect, crawl in', 
No canny in the hoose of labour : 
And these be either curious breedies 
Frae France, wi' lugs that fa' and tummell. 
I dinna ken, myseP, what need is 
For mair than am o' sic a funnell" 

* Donald Dinnie, a famous Highland athlete. 



In 1859 his muse assumed a graver tone. It was the 
centenary of Burns' birth, and for some years previously all 
Scotland was stirred with the thought of celebrating it in 
becoming fashion. Amongst other things there must, of 
course, be one or more prizes for poems, for which the public 
were invited to compete ; and rather for his own gratification 


Drawn from life by Paul Renouard 
By permission of the " Graphic " 

as an ardent admirer of Burns than with any ulterior view, 
my father presented a contribution his first and almost 
his last essay as a poet. No less than 621 poems were sub 
mitted for competition, and at the grand celebration at the 
Crystal Palace, where some 14,000 persons assembled, the 
poem to which the first prize was awarded was publicly read. 
All the poems were then collected in a centenary volume, 
and, much to my father's surprise, a prize of ^ro was 
awarded to his effusion as amongst the first twenty-six in 
point of merit. 


To come back to plain prose ; if there was one thing more 
than another that my father hated it was writing letters ; yet 
write he must, either personally or by deputy, nearly every 
day of his life. Letters simply poured in upon him day by 
day prayers for relief from the Artists' Benevolent Fund 
(founded and administered mainly by himself); petitions 
from budding artists to be allowed to submit their pictures 
to his criticism, or soliciting his advice under all sorts of 
difficulties; and downright begging-letters, many of them 
of the Micawber style, and some even still more plausible. 
These are the penalties that fame imposes on greatness in 
any art or calling, and there is no escaping the infliction. 
Witness Macaulay, whose amusing remarks on this subject I 
recall as apposite illustrations of this : "A fellow," he says, 
" has written to me telling me that he is a painter, and adjur 
ing me, as I love the Fine Arts, to hire or buy him a cow to 
paint from " ; while another man, whose sanity was, perhaps,, 
open to question, bombarded Millais with a series of letters, 

all more or less in the following strain: "S on-Sea. 

Dear Sir, You are evidently unaware or negligently jealous 
of the remarkable genius being now displayed by^Mr. A. 
Smith, the son of our local butcher. His works display a 
plane of thought never equalled by any of the Old Masters. 

. . . The first train to S on-Sea is ten A.M., and unless,'" 

etc., etc. 

But perhaps I had better give one or two instances within 
our home experience. Ladies were, perhaps, the greatest 
sinners in this respect On the most frivolous pretences, not 
always very exact in point of truth, they would ask straight 
out for monetary help ; while others, more expert in the art 
of begging, would first write for advice only, and then would 
follow a letter of thanks, with a request for something more 
substantial. In a letter now before me the writer says : 
"Sir, In thanking you for having so kindly informed me 
the course to take relative to my little daughter's best method 
to make progress in drawing, may I also solicit your name as 
a subscriber to a book I have written on the mysteries of the 
life of Shakespeare. I am but a humble working man, but 
many eminent persons have subscribed," etc., etc. That was- 
true. Many had subscribed, but none of them ever got the 

Another man wanted a photograph of Millais for a book 
he was bringing out on men of mark. The photograph was 



sent, and in acknowledging the receipt this gentleman says : 
" I note that in your last you have omitted no doubt quite 
accidentally to enclose the order form for the twenty pounds' 
worth of copies of the book. Neither do you say that you 
will be agreeable to support the coming volume to the extent 
named." I am afraid the omission he complains of was not 
altogether accidental, for this goodly twenty pounds' worth is 
not to be found amongst my father's effects. 

But perhaps the most amusing application was from a man 
in Devonshire, who wrote as follows : "I was out in an open 
boat in my nightshirt for three days and three nights, with 
only a jug of water for refreshment. My sufferings were 
very great, and I should feel much obliged by your kindly 
sending me a donation of ^"5." That was all. No explana 
tion as to how he came to be in such a draughty place so 
scantily clad, and as my father knew nothing of him, he too, 
I fear, failed in his object. 

To other applicants, however to those whose necessities 
were great, or who might fairly claim his sympathy as 
members of his own profession his ear was ever open. It 
was a real pleasure to him to minister to their needs, whether 
in time or money, and he was never happy till satisfied that 
he had done all he could in this way. As to his brother 
artists, a letter to his daughter Mary, in December, 1891, 
fairly expresses his feeling. He says: "I have already 
signed, and sent to London, the papers you refer to. I never 
delay anything connected with applications of poor painters, 
their widows, or children, as I know their anxieties and the 
importance of timely help." 

Needless to say, this sympathetic spirit was still more 
marked in his intercourse with his own family. He loved 
and was beloved by all, and no man ever better deserved 
the affection he enjoyed. 

A minor worry to him, as to others in his position, was 
the craze for autographs. Requests for his signature were 
constantly coming in; and, ever ready to give any little 
pleasure he could, he would commonly comply with them ; 
but when, as sometimes happened, a whole swarm of them 
appeared amongst his morning's letters, along with a lot 
of birthday books, that must, of course, be returned to 
the owners, his patience was apt to give way. " Do they 
suppose I have nothing else to do than to sit and write 



my name all day ? " he would exclaim as he slammed the 
studio door, resolved that no power on earth should get a 
signature out of him that morning. Under pressure like 
this he once told one of my sisters to write and say " No " 
to every autograph hunter under the sun ; but, while acting 
upon this order, she was so touched by a request in the 
handwriting of a child that, cutting off the signature from 

From a photograph by Mr. Rupert Potter. 

a letter addressed to herself, she sent it to. the applicant. 
And very glad she was that she had done so, for, two days 
later, came a pathetic little letter from the child, thanking 
her for the gift, and saying that, owing to some spinal 
complaint, she was doomed to lie on her back for life, and 
her sole amusement was the collection of autographs. 

Another nuisance to Millais was that, owing to the simi 
larity betwen his Christian names and those of two of his 
sons, one of w 7 hom was a dog-fancier and the other a naturalist, 




his time was occasionally wasted over letters in which he 
had no interest. After struggling for some minutes over 
hieroglyphics familiar enough to us, he would spell out, 
perhaps, some such question as this : " Why has the name 
of Savonarola the sixteenth, my famous basset-hound, been 
omitted from page 527 of the Kennel Club stud-book ?" 
or, " Will you write us an article on the scarcity of owls 
in the Inner Temple ? " And then flinging the letter from 
him, the master of the house would, I grieve to say, 
mutter to himself some words that were neither compli 
mentary nor considerate, seeing that we never complained 
when our time was wasted over such frivolities as a flatter 
ing invitation to open a new Art School in an unknown 
neighbourhood, or to deliver a lecture on the Fine Arts 
in some wretched educational centre ; and this right in the 
middle of the shooting season ! 

Of his love of music, I leave my sister Carrie to speak 
in a separate note at the end of this chapter introducing 
here only a few lines of his (written in 1884) that she after 
wards set to music. 


" O Psyche, what a chance thou lost 

When Cupid was thy swain ! 
Thou mightst have cut his tiny wings 
Too close to grow again, 

" And cast his quiver far away, 

His crimson roses shorn 
Of cruel barbs, and left to us 
The rose without the thorn. 

" Thou mightst have poisoned all his darts. 

Broken his bow in twain, 
And saved the world from bleeding hearts, 
From yearnings, grief, and pain." 

A fourth stanza was to have been added, but it seems 
to have fallen into the nethermost limbo that Byron assures 
us is " paved with good intentions." Writing from Birnam 
Hall, Millais says, "Dearest Carry, No, I have not 
done that fourth verse. 'Cause why? I haven't had the 
poetic mania on me. The muse is coy, and publishers must 


One more specimen of his lyric muse I am tempted to give* 


" Fly, gentle dove, with thy burden of love, 

To my sweet one, sweet, 
Nor rest until her window-sill 
Is at thy feet, thy feet. 

" Tap on the pane with thy bill again, 

Should she not hear. 
A moment's rest on her quiet breast ; 
Not more, my dear, my dear. 

" Then on thy wing the answer bring 

With no less speed 
Just one word, my bonny bird ; 
But one word I need." 

The entertainment of his friends, either in London or the 
"North, was always a great pleasure to him. He loved 
the bright and genial talk of a well-assorted party around the 
dinner-table, and being himself a persona gratissima amongst 
men of culture and sociability, his company was much sought 
after in society. But, as has been said of Macaulay, " his 
distaste for the chance society of a London drawing-room 
increased as years went on. Like Casaubon of old, he was 
well aware that a man cannot live with the idlers and with 
the Muses too. He really hated staying out, even in the 
best and most agreeable houses. It was with an effort that 
he even dined out; and few of those who met him and 
enjoyed his animated conversation could guess how much 
rather he would have remained at home." 

Not that he cared to shut himself up, either at home or 

anywhere else. He loved the society of kindred spirits, 

such as Lord James, Herbert Wilson, Arthur Eden, John 

Hare, Sir Henry Irving, John Toole, Carlo Perugini, General 

Lambton, Sir William Dalby, and others; and as he was 

pretty sure to meet some of these at the Garrick Club, he 

generally spent his evenings there, unless, indeed, his old 

friend Perugini dropped in, as he often did, for a game of 


And here I think I may fitly introduce a personal remi 
niscence that occurs to me as I write. Lord Tennyson 
has lately described in poetic language his visit to the 
birthplace of his father; but, I regret to say, the visit of 
two of Millais' sons to Portland Place, Southampton, on a 
Jike errand, was attended with somewhat different results. 



^ 1 


My brother Geoffrey and I then little chaps of about nine 
and ten happened to be staying in the neighbourhood of 
Southampton ; and our dear mother, thinking that we should 
improve the occasion by visiting the birthplace of our illus- 

Photograph by Mr. Rupert Potter 

trious parent, sent us some money for that purpose, and 
urged us to take an early opportunity of doing so. 

After hunting about the town all the morning, we at last 
found the house in a better neighbourhood than we had been 


led to anticipate. In fact it was about the best in the place. 
As we approached " the now famous mansion " (vide news 
papers), a sense of nervousness overcame us. We could not 
think what to say when we had rung that awful door-bell and 
found ourselves inside the house. But there was no help for it ; 
the thing must be done at all hazards. So, after a long talk, 
we tossed for it, as to who should take the responsibility; 
and the luck going against Geoffroy, he rang the bell, and in 
a moment the door was opened by a black-bearded ruffian 
the butler no doubt who nearly frightened us to death by 
the way in which he asked us what we wanted. At last 
Geoffroy stammered out, " Is this where Mr. Millais was 
born ? " to which he replied indignantly that he neither knew 
nor cared, and slammed the door in our faces. 

A bad start this, and very discouraging ; but, on discussing 
the matter in the peaceful precincts of a neighbouring tart- 
shop, we decided that it would be sinful to waste our dear 
parents' money on these luxuries without at least one more 
attempt to see the interior of the house. So once more we 
rang that bell. Now, whether it was that our appearance 
was against us, or that the butler was a man of a suspicious 
nature, I cannot say, but our second call was even less 
successful than the first. As soon as the door was Half 
opened the brute dived back into the hall for some implement, 
the nature of which we did not stop to inquire. Rather, we 
hastened away; and when the infuriated custodian, armed 
with a cricket-stump, chivied us at top speed half-way down 
the main street of Southampton, we concluded it was better 
not to interview him any further. Birthplace visiting, we 
thought, might possibly have its advantages, but as a pastime 
it was too lively for boys of our tender years. It should 
rather be classed in the same category with other dangerous 
sports, such as buffalo-hunting, or criticismg a certain artist's 

Writing in the Daily Graphic of August I4th, 1896, the 
Rev. Armstrong Hall says : " Millais' life and work in 
Scotland were both closely connected with and influenced by 
a city and a river. The city was Perth, in the outskirts of 
which is situated Bowerswell House, the loved home of his 
wife's family, and with the immediate neighbourhood of which 
were linked many of the most intimate associations of the 
last forty years of his life. The river was the Tay, which, 

Taken by Mackenzie, of Birnam. Circ, 1885 


2 57 

seen as the artist and the fisherman see It, rarely fails to 
appeal to the heart and the imagination. The Englishman 
who knows nothing of Perth beyond its comfortable hotel 
and Its spacious and often bewildering railway station, is not 
seldom at a loss to understand the claim of the city to its 
title of c fair ' ; but those who have lived there, as Millais 
did, can neither be blind to, nor fail to appreciate, the glories 
of its surroundings the rolling Strath of Tay, the lavishly 

Photograph by Elliott and Fry 

tinted and ever-changing woods, the distant hills, now purple 
with heather, now white with ice and snow, the majestic river, 
Instinct with movement and life and sound. 

" c This is much better than the Riviera,' Millais said as he 
gazed away to the north from Perth Bridge one bright winter 
morning of last year. . . . The climate of the Perth winter, 
too, suited Millais. ' I can't see to paint in London in 
November,' he used to say. But the winter in Perth is 
usually open, and while the days are sadly short, their 
brightness is a revelation to most Southerners wintering 
there for the first time. It was not, therefore, to be w T on- 
11 17 


dered at that the President preferred to see the New Year 
in before returning to London. . . . 

" And while atmospheric conditions and happy family 
associations link the President to the city of Perth, it was 
the spirit of the Tay which syren-like drew him to its banks 
and waters by a fascination which he found irresistible, and 
compelled him, as no other artist of his capacity had ever 
been compelled, to hasten to interpret its message and its song. 
Nor was the hold thus exercised likely to be weakened by the 
boundless facilities for sport provided by the river and its 
guardian woods. For he was a sportsman of the best type. 5 ' 

Yes, this "message and its song" were ever in his heart; 
even in the long weary weeks of April and May, 1896, when 
his life was slowly ebbing away. He was almost too weak 
then to think of them without tears ; and as any little dis 
traction was a relief to him, I brought him every day a few 
drawings of deer and deer-stalking on which I was then 
engaged. They interested him greatly, and after a careful 
examination he would write on his slate a short criticism of 
each and his advice as to which to use for my book and 
which to discard, together with other hints and suggestions 
that I need hardly say were most valuable. The last I 
showed him was a little drawing of a stag lying in the sun 
shine on a hillside, which reminded him so strongly of a 
famous stalk he once enjoyed that he began a long account 
of it on his slate and worked away until he was quite ex 
hausted. In the end he wrote, " Don't show me any more. 
It makes me think of Scotland, which I shall never see again." 

Miss Eliza Jameson had a somewhat similar experience at 
her last interview with my father. She writes: " The last 
time that I saw him was about a week before his death. He 
was very quiet, and I sat and held his hand for a little, but 
on my remarking on some heather in his room, which a friend 
had sent from Perthshire, he broke down and I came away." 

In bringing this chapter to a close I am glad to avail 
myself once more of Mr. Spielmann's excellent little book on 
Millais and his Works ; for no more fitting or more eloquent 
tribute to my father's memory has appeared in the Press. 
With consummate skill he has painted for us the man as he 
lived, and has touched with a master's hand the last sad 
scene of all. " Such," he says, " was Sir John Millais 
heartiest, honestest, kindliest among all English gentlemen 

o 5 

3 : 

< & 



of his day. He was the big man with the warm heart 
which he wore upon his sleeve ; plain-spoken, straightforward, 
genial, and affectionate, who rarely said a cruel thing and 
never did a harsh one ; without a grain of affectation and 
without a touch of jealousy. Almost to the end his life 
upon the moors seemed to have kept him for ever young, 
and their winds to have blown the cobwebs of prejudice 
from his mind, and every morbid and paltry feeling from 
his heart. Unspoilt by the extraordinary measure of the 
well-merited success that attended the development of his 
genius, he maintained to the last the hearty innocence of 
a youth, and the high hopes and sanguine optimism of a 
man at the beginning of life rather than one in the prime 
and vigour of his later manhood, in the heyday of his fame. 
The death of Leighton overpowered the nation in the 
intellectual love they bore him ; the death of Millais plunged 
us into still profounder grief. We have not had in his case, 
as in Leighton's, to wait until he died to know how much we 
loved him. To all he thought worthy of his friendship he 
gave it unasked, freely and heartily; and something more 
than friendship came in that warm clasp of the hand, so 
quick to grip, so slow to loosen. So thoroughly did the 
greatness of the man match the greatness of the artist such 
was his simplicity that those who knew him mourned in 
him rather the friend whom they loved than the painter they 
honoured and admired. 

" There is little need here to recall the splendid personality 
of the artist, the keen sportsman, whose prowess with the 
gun, the rod, and the long putting-cleek, and whose spirits, 
whether in the saddle or on foot, commanded the admiration 
of the many for whom the triumphs of Art are a lesser 
achievement But as I write, his figure seems to rise before 
me, shedding that magnetic pleasure round him his presence 
always brought. He turns to look at me, as he has done 
a score of times, from his round-backed chair before the 
great fireplace of the studio. He has discussed the pictures 
on the easels, ranged twice across the room, in his half-halting, 
half-explosive, wholly delightful way. His pipe is between 
his teeth, the beloved briar, more precious than the finest 
cigar Havana ever rolled. The travelling-cap of tweed, at 
first raised once or twice as if to ventilate the head, then 
carelessly replaced rakishly on one side, is finally thrown 
on to the table close at hand, and reveals the silver fringing 


to the splendid head a hairy nimbus, like a laurel-wreath, 
lovingly placed by the crowning hand of time. The strong 
voice that was to become, alas! weazened, husky, and 
inaudible at last sounds loud and fresh and hearty in my 
ears ; the powerful, kindly hand is placed with genial rough 
ness on my shoulder ; the smile, so full of charm ; the un 
tutored halting eloquence; the bright, happy, infectious 
roguery of the accentuating wink ; the enthusiastic talk on 
Art, now optimistic, now denunciatory of fads and foolishness ; 
a great jolly Englishman, unaffected as a schoolboy, and as 
unconscious as a man of genius. I see him as he turns, 
Anglo-Saxon from skin to core ; sixty and more by the 
almanac, but fifty by himself; vigorous and bluff, full of 
healthy power of body and of mind. I see him, true, 
straightforward, honest; staunch as a friend; hearty, but 
not vindictive, as a hater; generous in his blame as in his 
praise, glowing with enthusiasm for a young painter's success, 
or flushed with anger at a folly or a wrong. And then he 
smiles again that smile of extraordinary sweetness and signi 
ficance, which ever and anon lights up the handsome face 
and strikes the key-note to all that is tender in his work, 
all that is graceful and lovable in his pictures of passion or of 
beauty, in woman, man, or child. 

" And then again I see him, little changed, the kindness 
of his manner what it ever was ; the geniality of his friend 
ship as gentle and cordial as before the cloud had gathered. 
But it is difficult to hear him now, and the strain of talking 
is great He stops in the course of a sentence, and pointing 
in apology to his throat, he laughingly rounds off the 
conversational fragment with a knowing side-shake of the 
head. Once more I see him, forgetful of his dying self, 
striding off to the hospital to cheer a member of the 
Academy lying ill, for he is now the President, and father 
of his flock. TJien he vanishes from sight to his room 
of sickness, agony, and death. And word comes out to 
us of his heroism, his gentleness, his patient suffering, 
whispered tales of the old' white-bearded man, wasted, worn, 
and dumb, but bright .and handsome still, who yet has a 
warm and lusty grip for the one or two who may say good 
bye, and a faint smile of happy greeting that shows he is 
the old Millais still. And then we are spared the rest. 
And this is the end of a bright and sunny life the cruel 
lining to a cloud of purple and of gold." 

Photograph by Elliott and Fry 



George du Maurier A man after Millais' own heart Du Manner's love of the 
colossal and the grotesque The giantess Millais moralises for once Pitnch 
His admiration for the Knights of the Round Table and their work Visit of 
Du Maurier and his daughter to Murthly Illustrated letter of Du Maurier 
A present of game in verse Letters Charles Dana Gibson '* Trilby " 
Over-work A reward that comes too late. 

GEORGE DU MAURIER, or (to give him his full 
name) George Louis Palmella Busson du Maurier, 
the genial and gentle Du Maurier, famous alike in Art 
and Literature, must have a chapter to himself; for not 
only was he one of the most intimate and most beloved 
of my father's friends, but the correspondence between the 
two men was so characteristic that some of it must find a 
place in this volume. 

It was some time in the fifties just before Du Maurier 
joined the Punch staff that they first met, and, as might 
be expected of such kindred spirits, their acquaintance 
speedily ripened into a friendship that became ever deeper 
as the years went by. To both alike Society opened its 
arms, and for some years they mixed freely, if not frequently, 
with the gay and gilded throng, amused with what they 
saw, and gradually drawing to themselves those whose 
qualities of heart and mind were most in accord with their 
own. But with the advent of middle age came an increased 
and increasing distaste for the frivolities of what Byron so 
aptly calls " the polished horde formed of two mighty tribes, 
the bores and bored," and from that time forward they 
carefully avoided assemblies where (as is too often the case 
nowadays) wealth is more favoured than talent, and vulgar 
display the chief feature of the entertainment. 

Of Du Maurier, perhaps, more than of any other artist, 
it may be said that the man himself appears in his works ; 



for in all that long series of inimitable drawings that for 
years added so greatly to the popularity of Punch, the refine 
ment of his mind, his keen sense of humour, and his 
reverence for truth and manliness are no less conspicuous 
than his art. In private life he was habitually reserved and 
unobtrusive ; but to Millais, whom he knew to be moved by 
the same impulses as himself, and whose ideals were in the 
main much the same as his, he opened his heart as freely as 
a child, discoursing with him on every subject under the sun, 
and often on matters that he would confide to no one else. 

His own weakness was Size. Though strong and active, 
he was but a small man himself, and perhaps on that account 
his highest admiration, whether for man or beast, was 
reserved for creatures of colossal proportions. His heroes 
and heroines must all stand three or four inches over six 
feet, and their actions must be of the Homeric order. His 
dog, too, must be the biggest of his species; and in that 
matter his desire was gratified by the possession of " Chang," 
a huge St. Bernard with which all readers of Punch were 

When a giant of either sex appeared in London, he would 
spend all his pocket-money in seeing the monstrosity and 
treating his friends to a view; and more than once he 
hinted that if he could have been the real " Gulliver " 
his happiness would have been complete. In a letter to 
Millais in March, 1869, he implores him to come and see 
a wonderful giantess from Canada who was then on view in 
London ; but as my father was away at Hastings, recruiting 
his health after a serious attack of typhoid fever, he was 
obliged to decline the invitation. Du Maurier then sent 
him a full description of the creature, along with a sketch 
which showed her to be, like so many of these people, all 
but devoid of brains, and with hardly so much as an apology 
for a chin. In reply Millais thus addressed his friend : 


"Dear du Maurier, you can't be sorrier 

In lower spirits than I J m in. 
As you express, the giantess* 
Failure is a want of chin. 

" And oh ! that goitre, as I loiter, 

Haunts me on the sad sea sand, 
It seems to mingle with the shingle 

That drowns the Hastings German band. 


" Quite entre nans, between us two, 

I Ve pictured in my mind her presence, 
And (was n't it shocking?) I fancied her rocking 
J. E. M. in his convalescence. 

" Then on my pillow, to the sound of the billow, 

Dozing, methought a voice I heard ; 
She spoke Nova Scotian, but full of emotion, 
Singing ' I would I were a bird/ 

" Now you have quell'd and completely dispell'd 

My little dream of wonderland. 

That outline facial, however palatial, 

Is just the thing I cannot stand. 

" Perhaps 7 t is better that your letter 

Has divulged the cruel truth. 
Sway domestic reigns majestic 
Over this unsullied youth. 

" It were wiser we exorcise her 

When next a giantess is shown ; 
Taking each other, like a Siamese brother, 
Instead of going there alone. 

" For should a mighty, breathing Clytie, 

Ten feet high and warranted real, 
With yellow hair, all debonnair, 

Bound simply with a fillet of veal 

" A real Colossus come across us, 
Such as this, where are poor we ! 
The strings of my lyre emit Greek fire 
At the very thought of such miseree. 

" So let us abjure these freaks impure, 

And fondle our latest family pledge, 
Nor tempt the mystic nature artistic 
Which ever trembles on the edge." 

HASTINGS, March, 1869. J. E. M. 

In 1882 a bust of Du Maurier was sent to the Royal 
Academy Exhibition, and as one of the Hanging Committee 
Millais accepted it, writing : 

To Mr. Dn Maurier. 


"Kensington, April 3^,1882. 

" MY DEAR GEORGE, I spotted you amongst the decapita 
tions [busts], and for the love of the original will do my best 
to place it, and myself add a wreath of bays around the un 
conscious temples, in token of my appreciation of the artist 
which I leave you to guess. 


" If you are not R. A.'d as one of us, you at least escape 
the most disagreeable work that human nature is heir to. 
For five days Birnam Wood (in the shape of birch trees) has 
frowned down on us with defunct tomtits and birds' .nests. 
The only figure which has left a vivid impression on me, from 
its originality, is this : [a sketch of a very bad picture]. 

" Always yours sincerely, 


He was often, I find, in the rhyming mood when writing 
to Du Maurier. Here is another specimen of his verse, 
written in 1882 when, at the request of Mr. MacDonald, of 
Repplestone, he undertook to add to his gallery of artists' 
portraits that of their friend Du Maurier. 

To Mr. Du Maurier. 

"Kensington, November 2$th, 1882. 


Sunday week will suit me best, 
Because it is the day of rest. 
As painting you will be a pleasure, 
I count the operation leisure ; 
So come to me at half-past ten, 
And I '11 begin your portrait then. 

Behold the Sovereign's reward : 

To those alone who wield the sword, 

K. C. B. and K. M. G., 

And dinner with her Majesty. 

It would appear, a country's good 

Is only gained through shedding blood. 

In days to come will such things cease? 

And will there be a crumb for Peace? " 

Du Maurier seems to have misunderstood the gist of his 
remarks, for two days later Millais adds : 

" With more bad verse I would n't worry yer ; 

But you mistake my lay. 
I do not 6 grudge,' my dear Du Maurier, 

Or ' envy ' this display. 
Quite the reverse. I, too, agree 

They quite deserve their honours, 
That we are happy, paid, and free, 

In serving our own colours. 


" It only did occur to me 

If Shakespeare were still living, 
He would n't dine with Majesty, 

Apart from medal-giving ; 
That with our boasted civilisation, 

We are barbarians still ; 
For the highest honours of the nation 

Are conferred on men who kill. 

" ' T is the principle that puzzles me, 

Albeit in this I 'm blind. 
1 7 m satisfied if I can see 
To keep alive mankind. 

ee T 

Amongst the correspondence of 1885 I find the following: 


" Kensington, April 2 5 //*, 1885. 

" DEAR DU MAURIER, Thank you for your kind letter. I 
know you are too far away to drop in without great incon 

" I am thankful to say I am getting daily more hopeful 
about myself; but I am and shall continue for some time to 
come a cripple. It gave me the greatest pleasure to hear 
that you approved of my artistic efforts this year. A really 
modern subject * is commonly regarded as a difficulty, but I 
have endeavoured to prove it is not impossible to deal with 
success with the surroundings of our own time. It remains, 
however, to be seen whether the public will care for modern 
life. . . . 

" One of the great delights of the week is looking forward 

to the next number of Punch. 

" Sincerely yours, 


Yes ; to Millais Punch was what an ultra-learned friend of 
mine calls C6 hebdomadal refreshment," not only enlivening 
him with its bright and genial humour, but delighting his eye 
with drawings such as were to be found in no other serial. 
Most especially did he admire the drawings of Tenniel, 
Leech, Sambourne, Keene, Du Maurier, Phil May, Furniss, 
and Corbould; and when the two last-named artists fell away 

* "The Ruling Passion," 1885. 


from the Knights of the Round Table, he made quite a 
personal trouble about it. I happened to be present on one 
occasion when he took Du Maurier to task on this subject, 
thinking perhaps that he might do something to heal the 
breach, if he would; and greatly amused I was by Du 
Maurier s comic defence, delivered with all the solemnity of 
a prisoner with the gallows staring him in the face. 

It was indeed a pity that the services of such excellent 
draughtsmen should have been lost to the staff. Furniss' 
clever skits and sketches of our Parliament men were de 
lightful beyond measure, and equally at home was Corbould* 
amongst the park hacks, the " mashers," and the well-groomed 
ladies whom he loved to depict. His only rival now would 
seem to be Denham Armour, a recent acquisition, whose pre 
sentment of hunting scenes and clean thoroughbreds could 
hardly be excelled. 

At one time, when I used to take in the light and wanton, 
but excellently illustrated, Pick-me-up, I showed my father 
one of the first drawings in that journal by Raven Hill. " My 
word, what a clever fellow ! " he said. " Here 's poor Keene 
come to life again ; I hope they will get him for Punch " a 
wish he was glad to see fulfilled. Every year, too, the skits 
on the Academy pictures were a great amusement to him, 
particularly Furniss' drawings ; and the greater nonsense they 
made of his pictures the better he liked it. Besides " Squeak, 
Squeak," there was a delightful one, in 1886, of "Cherry 
Unripe," a travesty on the original that can easily be 

In the autumn of 1890 poor Du Maurier was sorely 
troubled about his eyesight. One of his eyes had long since 
gone, and the other now began to give way under the extra 
strain imposed upon it. As his whole life depended on his 
Art work, he was naturally most anxious to preserve this one 
sound optic, and under the advice of his oculist he deter 
mined to take a long holiday, such as he had not enjoyed for 
many years. Now, therefore, he paid us a visit at Murthly, 
accompanied by his daughter Sylvia. When the weather 
permitted, he went with us to the moors or the river ; and in 
the evenings, or at any odd times, he would enliven us with 
charming little French chansons, which he played and sang 
delightfully. If my memory serves me, one of his favourite 

* Mr. Corbould has now returned to the fold. 



models Captain " Ossie J? Ames, the Guardsman of 6ft. yin.- 
fame was also with us ; and a very merry party we were. 

Out of a little incident during this visit sprang one of Du 
Manner's inimitable sketches. One morning my sister, Mrs. 
James, hooked a fine salmon, and was playing it, when the 
old fisherman, thinking she was handling her prey somewhat 
too roughly, cried, " Be cannie \vi him, Miss I Be cannie ! " 
The idea of a delicate lady being too hard on a powerful 
fish so tickled Du Maurier's fancy that he made a drawing of 
the scene and sent it to Punch, where it appeared in Sep 
tember of that year. 

At St. Andrews again, for which he left us in September 
in company with Willie James (the original of " Bubbles ") 
and his elder brother George, he made several drawings of 
the boys admirable likenesses one of which appeared in 
Punch in 1890. From there, too, he sent a characteristic 
letter, which, with its accompanying illustration, I reproduce 


From Mr. Du Maurier. 


* ' September 13^/2, 1890. 

"My DEAR MILLAIS, Commongvoo porty-voo, mongamee? 
It is the Sabbath morning, and how can I spend it better 
than in writing to my J. E. M., to tell him that the eternal 
friendship I vowed him a quarter of a century ago has, if 
possible, been made more eternal after dwelling under his 


hospitable roof, and seeing him in the bosom of his family, 
and losing my heart to his lovely and accomplished daughters, 
and making friends (as I trust) with the heirs of his body 
male? More power to thy mighty elbow, J. E. M. 5 both 
with rod and brush, and may the fifty-nine pounder, for which 
thy soul lusteth, soon be thine ! . . . 

" Since our arrival it has been pouring cats and dogs, and I 
have been working tooth and nail and smoking cigarettes, 
and thinking how happy we were at Birnam. 

" And now, mon cher, as I know you don't like long letters, 
I will shut up for the present Please commend me to the 
kind remembrance of Lady Millais, whom I saw for an 
instant at Perth. With kindest regards to you and yours from 
all, and many thanks, I remain, yours ever, 


" P.S. Special remembrances to Miss Millais. 

" 2nd P.S. Sylvia sends her love. 

" 3rd P.S. Mes amities a M. Auguste, le chef des chefs'" * 

Amongst other amusing letters relating to fish and game, 
which Millais was in the habit of sending to his friend year 
by year, I find the following : 

To Mr. Du Maurier. 


" September 2 nd } 1891. 

" DEAR GEORGE, I sent you a beautiful lady salmon, and 
I hope before it was cooked you noticed her shapeliness and 
bright complexion. I also caught on Wednesday two cock 
fish probably her admirers but I says to myself, says I, 
the female for Maurier Dhu. 

" Just off again to the river. Love to all. 

" Ever yours affectionately, 

"J. E. M. 

" I am so fond of James, t and hope his play will be 
successful ; but the public are like salmon it is impossible 
to know what fly they will rise to, and when they will rise at 

* Auguste Mazerin, a French cook of great excellence, then in the Millais 
household. He used to paint portraits of questionable beauty, and was more proud 
of his artistic efforts in the studio (his bedroom) than of his successes in the 
kitchen. When the subject of Art was mentioned he commonly referred to 
"Messieurs Millais et moi" f Henry James, the novelist. 


To Mr. Du Manrier. 


"September 6th, 1891, 
" My dear, dear George, 
If you would gorge 
Pheasants, hares, and partridges, 
Just tell me where 
To send, mon cher, 
The victims of my cartridges ; 
And, if at home, 
I '11 send you some, 
Including hares and pheasants, 
As I believe 
You will receive 

With pleasure such-like presents. 
But should you be 
Across the sea, 

The toothsome birds and leveret 
Will disappear, 
And you, my dear, 
Will mourn the game you never ate. 

" From your old friend, 


" Serving his time of hard labour on the river. [Little 
sketch of himself and two boatmen.] 

" Read your story* with deep interest, and your friendly 
mention of J. E. M. with emotion." 

It was rather an anxious year for Du Maurier, this A.D. 
1891, for though he had for some time past adopted a larger 
and broader style of drawing, in order to relieve the strain 
on his eye, the weakness still continued, and he was now 
compelled to give up work altogether for some months. 
Millais refers to this in the following letter : 

To Mr. Du Maurier. 


" December 2 6 fh, 1891. 

" DEAR GEORGE, I miss your work in Pnnc/i, and rather 
suspect the reason is your old trouble. . . . 

" I am only just recovering, and very slowly^ from a severe 
attack of influenza ; and both my wife and son John are down 
with it, attended by comely professional nurses, but hardly 
making any progress towards recovery. 

* Peter Ibbetson. 
II 18 


61 The marriage of my daughter * was a pretty boom, fol 
lowed immediately by the prostration of nearly all the family 
except the happy lovers ; and I don't know when again life 
will be worth living. 

" I finished Peter \_Peter Ibbetson\ and we were all de 
lighted with it so original and so full of wise reflections. 
I care not what the professional literary critic says about it : 
the book displays refined taste, and is full of plums ; and the 
illustrations are delightful. 

"Now, dear boy, how do you like lecturing? And did 
you hold forth on lovely woman ? I do hate speaking in 
public, and cannot imagine you can like it ; but if it pays, 
well and good. 

" Do not bother to answer this yourself. Sylvia can tell 
me how you are. I saw her at the wedding, and she will 
have told you the bridegroom was tall enough ! The studio 
refuses to look itself again since it was converted into a 
jeweller's shop with the presents ; and I am very unhappy 
out of it. In a few days, however, I hope to be back in 
Scotland. This week's fog has quite crushed the spirit out 
of Yours sincerely, 

u J. E. MILLAIS." 

In the following year, alas, the clouds began to gather 
about him. Another attack of influenza laid him low ; and 
though, after a long illness, he recovered to a great extent 
both his health arjid his spirits, there yet remained a local 
weakness that gave to those about him, if not to himself* 
some cause for anxiety. His voice began to fail him, and 
in the sad light of subsequent experience one sees in the 
following letters the beginning of the end : 

To Mr. Du Maurier. 


October 17$, 1892. 

" DEAR GEORGE, I was glad to get yours this morning, 
and since you are interested in my health, I write this line 
to say I am very nearly myself, but not quite. That beastly 
influenza has left mental wrinkles which affect my spirits, and 
my voice sometimes is inaudible, and always husky. Further- 

* Sophie Millais, married this year to Captain Douglas MacEwen, 79th High- 



more, I am not so keen to work, at any rate just now. My 
fishing has been a total failure. Xo water in the Tay 
hardly enough to mix with the boatmen's whiskey so I 
have not enjoyed my holiday as of yore. 

" I rather fancied you had had some trouble ; but who 
hasn't? \Ve are momentarily expecting to hear of another 
grandchild's debut (Mrs. MacE wen's offspring), and at the 
end of this month my son John marries Miss Skipwith, whom 
you saw in my studio one of Trilby's height. 

u Ever yours affectionately, 


To Mr. Du Maitrier. 


' ' Xorem her i2th, 1893. 

" DEAR GEORGV, I have already written to Buzzard, 
explaining how much I regret not being present at the Arts 
Club dinner. The fact is I cannot face the journey to London 
and back (for I would have to return here) in this winter 
weather. I think it is too much to expect of me at my age. 
I have been for a week confined to bed with lumbago and 
rheumatism, and quite unable to paint out of doors, but I 
hope to begin my work shortl)-. . . . 

" Always yours affectionately, 


" I am not sure that. the process renders your work so well 
as the cutting. Sometimes there is a great want of sharp 
ness in the line." 

The following letters speak for themselves. 
from Mr. Du Maurier. 


" December 2 ^th, 1 893. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, Many thanks for your letter, which 
I was glad to get I have been for many days on the point 
of writing to you, but something always happened to put 
it off. 

" I wanted first to tell you how deeply grieved we all were 
to hear of the loss of Everett's daughter. It must have been 
a great blow to all of you. 


" Also I wanted to congratulate you, formally and friendlily, 
on the 'Order of Merit 5 so deservedly bestowed. I believe 
that Tadema and yourself are the only Englishmen thus hon 
oured. T. Carlyle was the last, I think. Anyhow, I 'm proud 
to have stuck you on the same platform in the Almanac as 
Tom Noddy's chairman! . . . 

" I am delighted you like the Almanac. The Knights of 
the Round Table all did their little utmost. 

" I think the process engraving improves, and feel sure it 
will go on improving. Sometimes the line is a little rotten, 
but the expression of the faces is generally well preserved, 
and I can't help thinking that as important as anything. 
Poor Swain [the wood-engraver] is in despair. 

" The dinner at the [Arts] Club went off all right Val 
[Prinsep] was your understudy. He came here to dine with 
us last week, though he had not crossed our threshold for 
more than twenty years ! So much for living in Hampstead ! 

" I 've no doubt you will bring back a stunning landscape 
or two, and am looking forward to seeing them soon, and to 
that walk up the Park and Piccadilly, and then perhaps back 
to this charming little abode for a smoke and a chat . . . 

" Yours ever most sincerely, 


To Mr. Du Maurier. 

" PERTH, N. B., 

"December 292$, 1893. 

"DEAR GEORGE, I must thank you heartily for your 
flattering portrait of me in the Almanac. I wish my figure 
was as slim and beautiful ; but I chiefly write to say what 
pleasure all your work has given me, not forgetting the other 
contributors. Really splendid work all round. In the 
weekly the monster bride held between her parents was 
sublime; the bridegroom perfect also; and I liked you 
taking in to dinner" the tall beauty indeed, all admirable. 
The new man, Reed, is very funny and an acquisition. 
I have looked at the number over and over again, and 
taken it all in illustrations and letterpress and I 
sincerely congratulate the knights of the Punch table. 

" I am still here painting, and enjoying the interrupted 
labour I can bestow on my work. 


" Happy Christmas and New Year to you and yours. 

" Since I wrote you last I have lost a dear little grand 
child Dorothy and almost daily I see the announcement 
of another friend gone. 

Ct Always affectionately yours, 


From Mr. Du Maurier. 


" April %th, 1894. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, I called at Palace Gate this after 
noon, and heard, to my great delight, that you were very 
much better and at Bournemouth. . . . 

" You will have seen that H. Furniss has left us. It 's a 
pity for Punch, I think, and (I should say) a pity for 

" Do you ever see an American illustrated periodical called 
Life? One 'Dana Gibson' draws in it beautifully. I think 
you would admire him immensely. . . . 

" I hope all your widely-spread family are well My 
daughter heard from Miss Millais that your son-in-law, 
Major James, had met with an accident out pig-sticking, 
and was coming to England in consequence. I hope it is 
not serious. 

" Please commend me kindly to Lady Millais, and with 
love from everybody here, believe me, 

" Yours ever sincerely, 


" Is it true that you 're growing a long white [sketch of 
J. E. M. with a long beard] ? " 

Charles Dana Gibson, the American artist, whose magni 
ficent line-work is here referred to, had only lately attracted 
the attention of the English public, though for years past 
his works had been familiar to all Americans in the pages 
of Life. Wonderful drawings they are, full of refinement, 
pathos, and sentiment, and the artist an American Du Maurier, 
with a broader style, a better technique, and a Greater sense 
of the ^ dramatic. Millais, who closely followed the black- 
and-white work of the day, had not then seen any of the 
young American's work ; and it was not until one day in the 



spring of 1895, when he -was confined to his bed and grateful 
for any amusement or distraction, that Du Maurier turned 
up with the portfolio issued in England and known as 
Drawings by C. D. Gibson. They gave the poor sufferer 
infinite delight; and, finding him absorbed in their study, 
I said, "Are they not splendid?" "Yes," he wrote on the 
slate, "they are perfect, but he should not put so much work 
into the faces of the young girls. They have not all those 
lines and heavy shadows. He sees a little too far under 
the skin." 

Sketches by Du Maurier 

The accident to Major William James unhappily ended 
in his death to Millais' great distress. He sustained, 
amongst other injuries, a slight concussion of the brain, and 
was invalided home; but before his health was thoroughly 
re-established he was ordered out to India again, where he 
died in the winter of 1895. 

In reply to Du Maurier's letter, Millais writes from the 
Royal Bath Hotel, Bournemouth : " I quite agree with you 
about Furniss, whom I do miss in Punch, and I am sure 
his venture will be very hazardous, as it seems to me that 
there are already too many illustrated publications. Every 


novelty has a success ; but it is the staying power which is 
wanted in everything. Will he obtain a continuance of 
favour after the first numbers ? I doubt it. 

iw I have not read you yet, as I must wait until your book 
\Trilby\ is finished to enjoy it. I liked the little beauty in 

"Sir Charles Halle and his lady are here, and I believe 
I heard her magic violin from one of the hotel windows 
during my crawling exercise on the gravel walk below. 

" This place is quite near where I was born (Southampton), 
and I shall go and look up the old home, and take a trip 
round the Isle of \Vieht on Wednesday. The last time I 

o ./ 

visited it was forty years ago, when I stayed at Farringdon 
with Tennyson, who, I think, was then writing Maud. 

" I don't know Dana Gibson's work, but will remember to 
look for it. 

" Sorry to hear you have had illness and bother. I have 
had a fair share of both this year, and it has made me won 
drous kinder on the score of fellow-feeling. How I wish 
you were here just now to stroll beside the sea. A pretty 
locality this, with pine-scented walks, few invalids visible, and 
only two blind men to remind one how bad things might be 
with oneself. 

" Drove to Christchurch yesterday. Such a beautiful 

" Love to all Yours, 

"J. E. M." 

It was towards the close of the salmon-fishing in the 
autumn of 1894 that Millais took up Trilby and read it (as 
who has not ?) with great pleasure. The character of " the 
Laird " was mainly drawn from himself, as was " Little Billee " 
from his friend Fred Walker. 

One evening after dinner at Bowerswell he took a piece^ of 
paper and scribbled the following criticism of the book, which 
he sent that night to the author. 


" October i6fA, 1894. 

" I 've read your three dear Britisheers, 

And I, too, love your Trilby, 
For she is one of the dearest dears 
That ever was or will be. 


" Write on, dear boy, and may your powers 

With pen and pencil still be 
Devoted to Her Grace of Towers, 
Or yet another Trilby. 

" This day I drink a bumper glass 

Of port the best of Gilbey 
To thee and thine, and that poor lass, 
In memory of Trilby. 

" Ever yours, after dinner, 

"J. E. M." 

Lovers of Du Maurier will, I am sure, welcome two more 
letters from him. 

From Mr. Du Maurier. 


" October \*jth, 1894. 

" MY BEAR MILLAIS, I was made happy by getting your 
happy rhymes this morning. First, because my poor Trilby 
has pleased you (and nothing can please me more than this) ; 
second, because they make me feel that you are better, and 
jolly and strong again. 

" I saw your son-in-law in Whitby, and his account of you 
was good. Whitby (where w r e were detained ten weeks) was 
not kind to us this year, as my wife was seriously ill there, 
and for many days ; and I have been very seedy myself for 
months, but am better now. Overwork, I suppose ; those 120 
illustrations to Trilby, no doubt. 

" We have but little hope of going to London this year. 
The race of lunatics who hire houses for the winter is 
probably exhausted. But, whether or no, I look forward to 
seeing you, and taking a walk arm-in-arm from Palace Gate 
to the Duke of Wellington's and back again some bright 
afternoon. I hope you are hard at work again; and 
especially I hope that after dinner you amuse yourself by 
writing some of those reminiscences which will be so 

"Sylvia and her belongings two male babies are with 
us here for a while. I need hardly say how warmly she sends 
you her love. 

* Millais being debarred from work had more than once expressed his inten 
tion of writing his reminiscences. But as his general health improved the literary 
intention vanished. 


" I am trying hard to evolve another book. Sometimes 
I think it will come; sometimes I feel like giving it up 
and writing my reminiscences, which are very mild com 
pared with yours. I shall be very glad to get a line from 
you telling me that you are well and at work again. The 
Punch Almanac will be all the better for some cheery news 
of you. Yours ever, cher confrere et ami, 



" August qth, 1895. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, I write a line to tell you how much 
I regret that I was so much bustled about by the forthcoming 
play of Trilby that I could not go and claim that promenade 
with you. I have not even found time to go to the Royal 
Academy and see your picture, and one or two others I 
very much wish to see ; but I very often think and talk of 
you, and most sincerely trust that all will be well with you, 
and that that vocal chord will soon recover its wonted 
sonority. I have been very seedy, and sometimes frightened 
out of my wits by my bogey, and shall be still again, but 
hope that rest and open air will pull me through gradually, 
or, at all events, turn me into the Stoic I so much want 
to be. 

" I have heard nothing but good of your work this year, 
and that (comparing you with yourself) means very good 
indeed. I wish I had seen it ! 

" Pray commend me kindly to Lady Millais and your 
daughter. May you have a good time and lots of the sport 
you love, and come back to us a giant refreshed. 

" Ever sincerely yours, 


" P.S. The ' Trilby ' and ' Little Billee' are to be played 
by two beautiful, but quite unknown, little people * whom 
I myself discovered. Tree took an immediate fancy to 
such a lovely c Trilby ! ' You would love her five feet nine, 
and made like a slender Venus ; and the ' Little Billee ' sat 
for my illustrations of him in the book the first portrait 
that is, the front face. They neither of them have much 
experience of the stage; but Tree believes in them both, and 
he and I have been doing our little best to coach them." 

* Miss Dorothea Baird now Mrs. H. B. Irving took the part of ' Trilby/ 


Finally comes this letter from Millais. 
To Mr, Du Manner. 


" November yd, 1895. 

" DEAR GEORGE, Let me congratulate you heartily on 
the success of your play, and recommend you to ' put money 
in thy purse, 5 Georatio, and save it, as these miraculous 
draughts of goldfish only happen once in a lifetime. Every 
one of your friends will be wanting to borrow ; but turn 
a deaf ear to all entreaty, for the time may come when 
the interest alone will save you from having recourse to 
picking up castaway cigarette-ends and cigar-stumps for your 

' k Your next book will not be received with the same 
cordiality, whatever its quality. Two successes in succes 
sion are never permitted, and the cussedness of the public 
is proverbial. Some of the family have seen the piece acted 
in Edinburgh, and were delighted. 

tk I remain North until the beastly fogs are over in town, 
as my voice is very feeble. Otherwise I am well. 

u Love to all. 

" Your affectionate friend, 


Poor Du Maurier lived to write yet another book (The 
Martian], and some admirable essays on " The Carica 
turists of this Century," both of which appeared in Harper; 
but the former tried him sorely, taking away what little 
strength and health were left to him. He " put money in 
his purse " too late for his own enjoyment, his only con 
solation being the benefit that accrued to his family, whom 
he dearly loved. After slaving away all his life at the most 
difficult and trying work, he died beloved, as he deserved 
to be, by all who knew him ; leaving behind him not only 
one or more of the most interesting novels of the day, 
but a vast number of delightful drawings, the refined humour 
of which cannot fail to be enjoyed so long as "merrie 
England " stands where she is. 



Pictures of 1890 Farewell to Murthly Portraits of Gladstone and his grandchild 

The story of " Emma Morland " " Halcyon Days " The fire at Newmill 

" Blow, Blow, Thou Winter Wind " An obliging collie Failing health 
Millais abandons work for a while Portrait of John Hare Continued illness 

Lord Rosebery's advice Death of Mrs. Gray " Speak ! Speak ! " Pro 
fessor Herkomer on Millais' work Letters from Linley Sambourne and Pro 
fessor Richmond Millais reverts to the serious subjects of his youth Notes 
by Rev. Armstrong Hall. 

JUDGING from the letters before me, Millais seems to 
have worked uncommonly hard in 1890. In July he 
had finished the portraits of Mrs. Chamberlain and Mrs. 
Gibbs, and was engaged upon the child-picture of " Dorothy," 
daughter of Mrs. Harry Lawson ; and, as I gather from his 
letters to my mother, who had gone to Birnam Hall to make 
ready for his coming, it was only by working every day from 
8 a.m. to 5 p.m. that he was enabled to join her, as he did, 
on the i gth of August. 

There " Dew-drenched Furze/' " Lingering Autumn," 
" The Moon Is Up," and " Glen Birnam " kept him fully 
occupied in the intervals of sport ; and, the weather breaking 
up at the end of January, he said good-bye for ever to his 
beloved Murthly, and returned to town. Writing from 
Birnam to my sister Mary, he says : "I have finished my 
work here, and you may expect me home early next week. 
I strolled down to the river and bid the Millers adieu ; and 
Tennyson's lines occurring to me, ' No more by thee my 
steps shall be, For ever, and for ever,' it was only with an 
effort that I was able to restrain a tear. ... As you may 
imagine, I am now groaning to be comfortably ensconced in 
the studio, surrounded with the artistic productions of the 
winter, which you will see in due time. Snow is all round 
us here, but not deep, and on the whole it has been much 
milder and, of course, much brighter than in London. . . . 





Will telegraph when I start, which cannot be until after Mon 
day, as George shoots that day with me our parting shot." 
These "artistic productions of the winter," along with other 
work, occupied all his time during the following summer. In 
a letter to my mother, dated August ist, 1891, he says : " I 
am working still terribly hard, and hope to get away at the 
end of the week. . . . The work [Mr. Gladstone arid his 
grandchild] is to all intents and purposes finished. I have 

had both Sant and Fildes 
to see it, and they are 
unanimous in approving 
especially the new head of 
Gladstone. When I return 
I will paint him in black 
robes and take out the 
child, % which divides the 
attention and spoils the 
dignity of the picture. . . . 
I have still to do some 
thing to the hand and hat of 
c Grace,'! for Tooth, touch 
Mrs. Wertheimer's eyes 
(she came Wednesday), 
and paint a little figure in 
' The Old Garden/ $ besides 
finishing little Rothschild ; 
but I see my way now to 
all. I clo so long to be 
with you and have rest." 
The next letter, dated August 3rd, 1891, refers to a draw 
ing which my father kindly promised me as a frontispiece to 
my book, Game Birds and Shooting Sketches. He says : "I 
have made, I think, a pretty drawing of Bewick for your 
book, and I will take it to the publishers, when it can be 
produced as a frontispiece. It has been very difficult work, 
because I am now out of the way of such small drawing. 
When I see the size of your book I will be able to give 
instructions as to the reduction of the drawing, which is too 
large as it is." 

* This he was not permitted to do. 
t Miss Grace Pallisser, now Lady Wallscourt. 

% This does not refer to the large landscape painted in 1888, but to the sketch 
in oils which he first made, and which is now in the possession of Mr. Wertheimer. 


By permission of Thomas Agrtfftu and Sons 

i8 9 i] LETTER TO HIS WIFE 289 

Then comes a letter to my mother, dated August lyth: 
" I am now so well on with my work that I see my way to 
joining you in a few days. ... I shall finish the Rothschild 
boy so that the parents can see it, and I have put the little 
figure in ' The Old Garden,' for Wertheimer. Mrs. Wert- 
heimer gave me a sitting yesterday, and I did what he 
asked, so those two can be removed on Monday. . . . Glad 
stone's portrait remains here till I return, and I can then 
make up my mind what to do with it. The head is now 
quite first-rate, so I know it will be satisfactory. 

" James [Lord James of Hereford] can, when I am away, 
call and see Phyllis' picture [' Little Speedwell's Darling 
Blue'], which is finished enough for the moment; so I can 
leave with comfort. I have only to touch ' Grace ' [Miss G. 
Palliser], which is not a difficult matter, and I think Monday 
morning or Tuesday at latest will see me off. I could not 
have enjoyed my holiday without having done all that was 
necessary, and I need not say how anxious I am to see you 
after such a long absence. ... I dine this evening again 
with the Peruginis, who have been most kind and hospitable." 

"Sorry to see poor Lowell [James Russell Lowell, the 
American poet and ambassador] is gone another man I 
knew well. I am reading, in Harper, Du Maurier's novel, 
in which he pays me a great compliment.* 

" There is some chance, I hear, of Lord Salisbury (when 
his government retires) making Leighton a peer, which, I 
think would be a proper compliment to the Arts. If I live 
long enough I may be made one too, but I have no desire 
beyond what I have. . . . 

" The picture of Mrs. B. is thought about the strongest 
thing I have done, and I myself see it is first-rate. So I 
must wait my time in the disposal of it, and leave the finish 
ing touches of the background until I return. Altogether, I 
have reason to be quite comfortable, and I now only think of 
the pleasant prospect of meeting and having what the Ameri 
cans call c a good time.' " 

The picture of Mrs. B., known as " Sweet Emma Mor- 
land," has a somewhat curious history. In 1886, or there- 

* The Trilby compliment runs thus : " Rossetti might have evolved another 
new formula from her. Sir John Millais, another old one of the kind that is 
always new, and never sates nor palls like Clytie, let us say ever old and ever 
new as love itself! " 

n 19 


abouts, a lady who described herself as a professional model, 
called at Palace Gate, hoping to obtain work from Millais. 
Her features were refined, and not without some claim to 
beauty, and Millais, having decided to paint her, commenced 
at once the picture in question. She gave him several sittings 
afterwards, and the work was getting on well, when one day 
she appeared with tears in her eyes, and said she could never 
sit again; that she was the wife of a hump-backed professor 
of French, somewhat superior to herself in station, and that 
having accidentally discovered that she was earning money as 
a model, he was perfectly furious, and forbade her ever to sit 
to anyone again. It was, of course, a great disappointment 
to Millais to have his work put an end to in this way, but 
there was no help for it. The canvas was put away in a 
corner of the studio, and there it remained until one morning 
in 1891, when Charles Wertheimer happened to catch sight 
of it, and asked why it had not been finished. Millais then 
told him the story, adding, " I have not seen or heard of her 
for years, and am not likely to do so again, under the circum 
stances." u That is a pity," said Mr. Wertheimer, " I should 
have liked to buy it, if finished." Strange to say, that very 
afternoon the post brought a letter from Mrs. B. saying that 
her husband had just died, leaving her very ill-provided for, 
and she would be glad if Sir John could give her some work 
to do. He was very pleased to do this, and so " Sweet Emma 
Morland " was finished. He kept the picture himself, though 
since his death it has passed out of the hands of the family. 

In the autumn of 1891 he rented the salmon-fishing of 
Redgorton, where he had good sport, killing about forty 
fish. He also took on lease for four years the shootings of 
Stobhall, along with a comfortable residence called Newmill, 
into which he removed in October. This was really the best 
shooting we ever had, as far as quantity went, our annual bag 
running to over three thousand head, including, in favourable 
seasons, as many as six hundred brace of partridges and a 
thousand wild pheasants. Here for a while, he enjoyed the 
peace and freedom he so greatly needed. Yet when the 
landscape appeared before him in the full glory of its autumn 
tints he could not resist the temptation to secure at least 
some record of its beauty ; so, selecting for his scene a quiet 
backwater near the house, he set to work on the picture now 
known as " Halcyon Days." 

By permission of Mr. Leopold de Rothschild 



Hardly was it finished before its existence was threatened 
by the destruction of the house in which it was lodged. 
During the night of January loth, 1892, a fire broke out in 
the old part of Newmill, and, in spite of every effort to 
conquer it, the whole place was burnt down to the ground. 

The fire, serious as it was, might have involved even 
graver consequences but for the sagacity of a \vater-spaniel 
belonging to a brother officer of mine, Captain Malcolm 
Murray, of the Seaforths. Being a bit wild, I had promised 
to give it a couple of months' training at home during my 
" long leave," so it was sent off to Newmill with my soldier- 
servant, John Whiteford. It was a bitter winter's day, \vith 
three feet of snow on the ground, when he arrived ; and 
having lit a huge fire in my bedroom he turned into bed in an 
adjoining room, taking the dog with him as a companion. 
Some time after midnight he was aroused by the dog, who 
sat in the middle of the room howling as if his heart would 
break. Seeing no cause for this, the man got up and beat 
him, and then turned into bed again ; but the howling still 
went on, and one or two more lickings failing to stop it, 
Whiteford gave up the attempt in despair, and went to sleep. 
Fortunately Watson, my mother's maid, was awoke by this 
piteous noise, and, coming downstairs, found dense volumes 
of smoke streaming through the house, on which she raised an 
alarm, and in another minute the inhabitants were all racing 
for their lives to escape the flames that were now spreading 
rapidly. Then from neighbouring cottages came to their 
help all the men about the place, who, working with a will, 
sent the furniture flying out of the windows into the deep 
snow, where next morning the grand piano figured con 
spicuously a finer example of black-and-white than my 
father quite cared to see. What he thought of it may be 
gathered from the following letters to my brother Everett and 
my sister Mary. 

To Mr. Everett Millais 


"January, 1892. 

" DEAR EVERETT, We have had a terrible experience of 
fire, but all of us are safe and unharmed. At three o'clock 
this morning your mother and I were awakened by Watson 
saying the house was on fire. We dressed anyhow, and I 


got your mother out, and then saw great flames streaming 
out of the windows of the old part of the house. Your 
mother was taken at once to the farm, where there was 
a comfortable kitchen stove, and there she and I remained 
until the big dwelling was gutted, for the firemen and engine 
could n't arrive in time to save anything. Nearly all our 
things have been saved, as the men threw them out of the 
windows and brought out a lot of furniture my picture, 
' Halcyon Weather,' being brought out first. Indeed, con 
sidering how quickly the fire involved the whole mansion, 
it is wonderful what was accomplished. Poor John's things, 
however, are all gone his guns and portmanteau full of 
clothes. The servants also lost everything, as the fire 
originated in that wing, and the smoke made it impossible 
to save anything. Your mother was wonderfully placid 
through all the turmoil, but I fear she will feel it more 

" We are comfortable here, but I feel my chest a bit, after 
being up in such a night often in and out to see what was 
doing. Fortunately the night was quite calm and still, other 
wise very little could have been got out. 

u Your affectionate father, 


To Mary he wrote: "You will have received the tele 
gram announcing we are all safe. But what a terrible time 
we have gone through ! Your mother and I were called by 
Watson (half-crimped hair flying wildly with terror) at three, 
shrieking, ' Get up, get up, the house is on fire ! ' We 
dressed anyhow, and I got your mother out of the house on 
the deep snow, and the gardener at once took her to the farm, 
where there was a stove alight and the room felt warm and 
comfortable, with three dear little girls in one bed staring 
at us. ... The servants have lost everything, as the fire 
originated in their wing, and when we left in the carriage 
the house was a smoking ruin. 

" The fire engines from Perth came, but too late to save 
but a small fragment of the building. The night was quite 
still, otherwise we could only have saved ourselves. Even 
the piano was got out, and quantities of furniture strewn 
about the lawn some of it, of course, injured but it is 
wonderful what was done by the calm Scotchmen. William 
and John's servant also did excellent work. 

By permission of Mrs. Sandars 


" Poor Watson was sadly distressed and hysterical. Julia 
and she were at one time quite off their heads ; and no 
wonder, as it was an appalling sight, with the roaring flames 
and the thunder of roofs falling in." 

One thing of mine, however, was saved. As soon as 
everything was out of the building, Whiteford, who knew 
I valued extremely a case of drawings I had done in Western 
America, pluckily broke through the window from the outside 
and, fighting his way through smoke and flames, just managed 
to reach the case and stagger out with it, though nearly 
suffocated in the attempt. So great was the heat that he 
found it impossible to rescue some valuable guns which lay 
just beneath the portfolio. My father was delighted with the 
man's bravery, which he himself witnessed, and afterwards 
made him a handsome present besides supplying him with a 
new kit. 

Many were the kind and cordial invitations that Millais 
and his wife received from friends in Perthshire, now that 
they had lost their pied-a-terre in that part of the world ; but 
Bowerswell, the home of the ever hospitable George Gray, 
was open to them ; so there they went, and remained until 
the disappearance of the London fogs enabled them to 
return home in comfort. 

Deep snow was now everywhere around, and over the 
Perthshire hills came driving blasts that filled up the valleys, 
putting an end for a time to sport. But to Millais idleness 
was simply unbearable ; under any circumstances he must be 
up and doing, and as snow-scenes had always a great attrac 
tion for him he started another landscape, in illustration of 
the well-known lines : 

" Blow, blow, thou winter wind j 
Thou art not so unkind 
As man's ingratitude." 

It was not altogether a cheery site that he selected for his 
work a bleak and draughty place near the gamekeeper's 
house on Kinnoull Hill but the scene in front of it was what 
he wanted, and that was all he ever thought about when bent 
on business. Looking northward, you see a road winding 
away round Corsey Hill to join the old highway from Perth 
to Dundee, described by Sir Walter Scott as " the entrance to 


the Highlands " ; on the right appear some of the fine old 
Scotch firs that embellish the craggy side of Kinnoull, and on 
the left are the wind-swept fields of the Hatton farm. There 
then, in the midst of the snow, he planted himself and his 
paraphernalia, and bravely worked at his painting from day 
to day until he had got all he needed to enable him to finish 
it in the studio. 

In the following spring it was exhibited at the Academy, 
but by some oversight only the first line of the quotation he 
sent with it appeared in the catalogue, and so the dramatic 
force of the picture was probably overlooked by the multitude. 
A keen observer, however, would not fail to notice the misery 
of the wretched woman in the middle distance, as she sits by 
the side of her child, while her husband calmly walks away, leav 
ing them to their fate. The dog too partakes of her misery, 
howling aloud in painful indecision as to which of the unhappy 
pair he should follow. 

A somewhat curious circumstance attaches to this dog. 
When well on with his work Millais asked Howie, the game 
keeper, to find him a good dark-coloured collie to paint from 
one of those intelligent animals that generally abound in 
the Highlands but for two days the keeper strove in vain 
to find one. On the third morning, however, Millais found 
sitting by the side of his easel at the top of the hill the very 
dog he wanted, and was quite surprised by the affectionate 

treating it gave him. " Well, Howie," said he, when his 
eeper came up, " I see you have got him at last." " Na'," 
said Howie, "he does na' belong to me. A' was thinking 
you had brought the bit doggie yoursel', Sir John." It was 
doubtless a stray collie that appeared so opportunely. In 
three days, during which he stayed in the keeper's house, his 
portrait was finished, and he then disappeared as mys 
teriously as he had come. 

The picture is not perhaps an attractive one at first sight, 
but it must inevitably grow upon the spectator who cares for 
absolute truth in form and colour. Apart from the tale it 
tells, the impress of Nature in her wildest mood is there. 
We see it in the fir-trees standing out against the sky, with 
their branches turned back upon themselves by the force of 
the passing gale an effect that Millais believed had never 
been depicted before ; and as for colour, did anyone ever see 
before so many colours in snow ? Yet they are all there in 
Nature for him who knows how to look. 


In March, 1892, he returned to town, only to find his 
work impeded by heavy fogs, and himself far from well. 
The swelling in his throat, too, caused him some uneasiness, 
and he had hardly yet shaken off the baneful effects of 
influenza, from which he suffered severely in the previous 
spring. So this summer he did but little work. For days 
together he would go into the studio in the morning saying, 
"I feel better. I think I shall try and do some work to 
day " ; but no sooner had he got his colours ready than the 


same sense of lassitude would return, the same incapacity for 
concentrated thought He would then throw down his 
palette in despair, pull out the card-table, and play Patience 
for the rest of the morning. 

And much the same thing occurred in 1893. During 
these two years his correspondence (always a burden) became 
larger than ever, and to add to his troubles, a defect in my 
mother's eyesight which an operation failed to remove not 
only caused him great anxiety, but deprived him of her 
valuable and ever ready help. So, this year too, little was 
accomplished in the way of Art 

One portrait, however that of his old friend John Hare, 
the comedian remains as proof that even at this wearisome 


time were intervals when his pristine vigour asserted itself 
in fullest force. It is, I venture to think, an admirable 
painting, both as a likeness and a work of Art, and it is 
pleasant to find it so gracefully referred to in Hare's auto 
biography, where, speaking of Millais, he says : "It was in 
these days [1865] that my friendship with John Millais began, 
a friendship strengthened and cemented by years, and by my 
increasing and intimate knowledge of the most simple, most 
large-hearted, and most delightful of men. Neither success 
nor the honours that had been heaped upon him by his own 
and other countries have in the remotest degree spoilt that 
fine and manly nature. As John Millais was to his friends 
in 1865, so he was in 1895. ... I shall always feel that the 
greatest compliment ever paid me was Millais' desire to paint 
my portrait c I 'm going to paint you, old fellow,' he said, 
4 and you must come and sit for me next Sunday.' I went 
again and again, and charming indeed are the recollections 
of those sittings, of his bright and cheery talk, and the infinite 
pains that he took with his work. When the picture was 
finished he, with characteristic generosity, presented it to my 

The year 1894 opened somewhat badly for Millais. He 
had hardly shaken off the depressing influence of influenza 
before other ailments fell upon him, to the serious interrup 
tion of his work. " St. Stephen " and " Speak ! Speak ! " 
were then engaging his attention at Perth. Writing to 
Mr. Briton Riviere, R.A., on January i8th he says: " I am 
coming up to town very shortly, but remain here as long as 
I can, working daily, yet not altogether up to the work in 
health. I have suffered continuously from rheumatism, and 
had one very severe attack of lumbago, which confined me 
to bed ; so you see you have not a monopoly of ailments. . . . 
I am painting subjects I have thought of years back, and 
no landscapes, and am much interested in my work, but 
dreadfully despondent at times, overwhelmed by a recurring 
conviction that the game is played out no more pictures 
wanted. As long as our work looks fresh and new it is 
called garish, and must be so to a certain extent, not being 
fairly gauged in company with the old masters, through the 
ignorance of critics who are not able to see the extraordinary 
amount of good form in the moderns notably in the illus 
trations to magazines." 


te^J t- 


"ST. STEPHEN" 303 

Very kind and sympathetic, and very characteristic of 
the writer, is the letter he received shortly afterwards from 
Lord Rosebery, who, hearing of the depression from which 
he was suffering, wrote : 

From the Earl of Rosebery. 


"March z6th> 1894. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, . . . But, my dear friend, exchange 
the profession of influenza for that of painting, and come to 
town. To practise influenza at Bowerswell (wherever that 
may be) is all very well, but Apelles at Palace Gate is 
better. Yours ever, 


Millais then returned to town. The background for 
" St. Stephen" was already painted from a disused stone- 
quarry on Kinnoull Hill, close to the scene of " Blow, Blow 
thou Winter's Wind" and he now went steadily on with 
the work, drawing upon his own imagination for the face 
of the martyred saint, and getting Mr. Gordon McEwen, a 
brother of his son-in-law, Captain Douglas McEwen, to sit 
for the figure until relieved by a professional model, from 
whom it was afterwards finished. The shoulder of the hill, 
just beyond the big fir-tree in the picture, conceals the 
entrance to the quarry. A week's work in the open air 
sufficed for the shadowy wood and the retreating figures 
of the murderers, for one of whom he obtained a model 
in Perth, where he roughly sketched in the principal figure. 

Now came another relapse in Millais 1 condition. His 
old prostration returned in an aggravated form, and, being 
quite unable to work, he took himself off to Christchurch, 
in Hampshire, where, after a prolonged stay, he recovered 
sufficiently to enable him to return home and finish two 
other pictures " The Empty Cage " and a portrait of Miss 
Ada Simon. 

His wife was then away in Germany, under the care of 
a famous oculist, and on April 25th her mother, Mrs. Gray, 
died a bright, cheery old lady, to whom we were all 
devotedly attached. Millais felt it very deeply, and, writing 
to his wife on May ist, expressed his great regret that his 


doctor, Sir Richard Quain, would not allow him to attend 
the funeral. His concluding words are : " Although so 
distressing to lose your mother, she has lived so straight, 
so good a life, that one ought to be thankful; but it will 
be a great sorrow to you." 

His health now showed signs of improvement, and as 
soon as "St. Stephen" was finished, he took up the painting 
of " A Disciple," engaging as his model a Miss Lloyd, who 
had recently sat to Leighton for his "Lachrymae." The 
subject interested him almost as much as that of " St. 
Stephen," and he was proud to think of the two paintings, 
when finished, as amongst the best things he had ever 
done. Writing to his wife, on July ist, 1894, he says: 
" You will be glad to hear Quain is certainly restoring my 
health, and I am able to work a little every morning, but 
I am giving up all engagements and dinners. ... I never 
told you that Tate purchased ' St. Stephen ' and ' A Disciple ' 
for the nation, because I was expecting you home and I 
thought it would be a pleasant surprise for you. I am, of 
course, very pleased at their destination. Lady Tweeddale 
called, and I shall perhaps paint her as well as her daughter 
who accompanied her." 

In the autumn he went, as usual, to Scotland, again 
availing himself of Mr. George Gray's hospitality; and in 
November was commenced the picture known as " Speak ! 
Speak ! " The subject, he told me at one time, had been in 
his mind for forty years, with full intention of painting it, 
but again and again circumstances beyond his control had 
thwarted his design. Now, he delighted to think, his wish 
would be gratified. 

The picture tells its own tale. It is that of a young- 
Roman, who has been reading through the night the letters 
of his lost love; and at dawn, behold, the curtains of his 
bed are parted, and there before him stands, in spirit or 
in truth, the lady herself, decked as on her bridal night, 
and gazing upon him with sad but loving eyes. An open 
door displays the winding stair down which she has come ; 
and through a small window above it the grey dawn steals 
in, forming, with the light of the flaring taper at the bedside, 
a harmonious discord, such as the French school delight in, 
and which Millais used to good effect in his earlier picture, 
" The Rescue." 

JOHN HARE. 1893 
By permission of Mr. John Hare 

II 20 

i8 94 ] SPEAK! SPEAK! 307 

An old four-poster bedstead being a necessary element 
in the composition, he purchased one in Perth, and had 
it set up in one of the spare rooms at Bowerswell, and 
there he worked away at the painting for two months, by 
which time he had got all he wanted to enable him to finish 
it elsewhere. Miss Hope Anderson, daughter of the old 
minister at Kinnoull, stood for the figure of the lady, and 
was in turn succeeded by Miss Buchanan White, a neighbour 
of Mr. Gray's, but the lady's face was left till Millais' return 
to town, when he painted it from Miss Lloyd. The young 
Roman, only roughly sketched in at Bowerswell, was painted 
in London, when Millais was lucky enough to find a good- 
looking Italian as a model. * 

Mr. F. B. Barwell kindly sends me the following note 
about the lamp in this picture : "Of the artist's resolve 
to have the actual thing he intended to imitate before him 
with its appropriate surroundings, whenever possible, the 
following typical instance is a good one. The picture was 
in the main finished, but the form of the lamp had not 
been decided upon. I advised him to pay a visit to the 
South Kensington Museum. He found there the very thing 
he required. It was, however, absolutely against the rules 
to lend any article whatever from the collection. The 
officials nevertheless offered to give him every facility within 
the building. To make a drawing or a study was not, 
however, -enough for him; he wanted such a lamp placed 
in his studio exactly under all the conditions of lighting 
the effect demanded. At the suggestion of a courteous 
official, a drawing was made, from which an iron-worker 
executed a facsimile of the lamp, which Millais paid for 
and used." 

From first to last he took quite a romantic interest in this 
picture. Never before, I think, had I seen him so well 
pleased with any work of his own ; and when at last the 
Royal Academy decided to purchase it under the Chantrey 
Bequest, he was quite wild with delight at this marked 
appreciation on the part of his brother artists. 

Punch had an amusing note on the painting that Millais 
used often to chuckle over, the suggestion being that it 
represented a young man whose wife had run up a fearful 

* It has been said that, " but for the sight of that throat [the Italian model's] 
he might never have painted the picture," and that u the scene is the turret-room 
at Murthly Castle " ; but these are mere "guesses at truth," and bad ones. 


bill for diamonds, and this so haunts him that he has 
a nightmare in which she appears arrayed in all her 

But more to the point are the following letters from men 
whose judgment is unassailable in matters of Art, and whose 
friendship Millais ever reckoned amongst his treasures. 
Professor Herkomer's (written in anticipation of the opening 
of the Academy) refers, it should be said, to all the works 
Millais exhibited this year, notably " Speak ! Speak ! " " St. 
Stephen," and " A Disciple." 

From Professor Herkomer, R. A. 


" April 2$th 9 1895. 

" MY DEAR SIR JOHN MILLAIS, I cannot resist the impulse 
to write to you and thank you for your work at the Royal 
Academy. It is the strongest arm that has been put forth 
for a long time against the fearful (and mad) wave of the 
modern tendency. 

" I pray God to spare you long, to enable you to give us 
much of such beautiful work, and I pray you may long be able 
to help us with your personality, for you are one of the few 
men in this world who are loved by all. 

"Yours ever affectionately, 


From Mr. Linley Samboitrne. 


"April $Qth, 1895. 

" DEAR MILLAIS, I feel I cannot help writing to let you 
know how much your beautiful picture of the apparition, or 
whatever it may be (for I am ignorant of the legend) has 
impressed me. I think it the finest picture you have ever 
painted, which is going as far as possible. Should it not be 
the finest, at any rate it has moved me as such, and once seen 
can never be forgotten. 

" The most perfect female head possible to be depicted by 
man. Wonderful ! Every Englishman capable of appreciat- 

I -_ _ 


ing such work must feel proud and elated that it comes from 

" I deeply regret I did not have the opportunity of seeing 
it unsurrounded by other works in your studio. 

" With all congratulations and good wishes, 

" Yours very truly, 


From Professor Sir W. B. Richmond^ R.A. 

"MY DEAR OLD FRIEND, Your lovely picture, c Speak! 
Speak ! ' haunts me, not only with its beauty, but with the 
depth of its modern thought. It is as poetic as your early 
dream. . . . 

" Leave the world and its vanities of praise or blame, and 
use your ripe and golden years to come, to express with all 
the tranquillity that is bought by age and experience, and tell 
the world your sweetest and most noble thoughts. 

" However strictly obedient we may be to the duties of 
our lives to others, we owe a duty to those strange impulses 
of the soul which, I believe, are granted to us by a Divine 

" What we may say may seem but as whispers among the 
clamour of the crowd and the cries of " greed " ; but those 
whispers of our inmost feelings will touch someone God 
only knows how many and they will touch those most in 
need of consolation ; not the rich perhaps, but the poor, the 
suffering, and the hopeless. And it is to that latter class that 
your picture that I saw to-day will appeal ; and of that class 
are the coming class rulers. . . . 

" Your audience will be fit though few out of fashion 
perhaps, but the salt of the earth. 

" Your affectionate 


All through the summer of 1894 Millais* general health 
continued to improve, but unhappily the local malady showed 
little, if any, signs of abatement ; and though the able special 
ists whom He called to his aid spoke hopefully of the 
case, he had himself a strong presentiment an impression 
he was never able to shake off that his life was doomed. 


Happy for him that at such a time he could face the future 
unmoved by any sense of fear ; for though he seldom went to 
church, his whole being was permeated by a sense of " the 
Divinity that stirs within us." Christianity was with him no 
mere profession, but a living force by which his actions were 
habitually controlled; and so in the consolations of religion 
he found all the help he needed to enable him to bear up 
bravely and without a murmur even in the darkest hours of 
his life. 

One is not surprised to find that, under such influences, his 
attention was drawn even more forcibly than before to 
Biblical scenes as fit subjects for his brush. He had often 
talked of them with his friend the Rev. Armstrong Hall, 
minister of St. John's Church, Perth a man of culture and 
refinement and had gathered from him many valuable hints, 
especially as to the artistic capabilities of various New Testa- 
tament subjects. In the autumn of 1893, when " St. Stephen " 
was in his mind as the next subject to be taken up, they dis 
cussed together the age of the deceased martyr, as to which 
there seemed to be some doubt ; and finally coming to the 
conclusion that he was but a youth when he met with his 
tragic end, Millais so represented him. 

To this latter-day trend of his thoughts Mr. Armstrong- 
Hall referred in touching terms, quaintly reflective of his 
belief in Scottish influence, in an obituary notice in the 
Daily Graphic of August I5th, 1896. "Everyone," he says, 
u who knew the President was struck by the way in which, 
his bright lightheartedness never failing him, his mind in 
recent years had Nevertheless turned to the portrayal of 
serious themes. ' Speak ! ' { St. Stephen/ ' Time,' and ' A 
Forerunner,' were but outward and visible signs of the drift 
of his thoughts, and those who were permitted to share his 
confidence knew that scenes more sacred still were ' incubat 
ing, 1 as he used to term it, in his imagination. He was him 
self conscious of the change. c Are you surprised,' he asked, 
* that I have come back to the solemn subjects of my early 
years ? ' 

" How largely Millais was indebted for this change, or 
rather for this growth, to his life in Scotland it is not hard to 
imagine. The grey sky, the short winter days, the serious 
Scottish character, the quiet and repose of Bowerswell 
antithesis to the unavoidable bustle and unrest of life in 
London all combined, in the Wisest Hands, to bring him 

i8 94 ] A REMINISCENCE 313 

gently but surely into sympathy with the sentence of death 
which was upon him, although he knew it not, and so to 
remove from his naturally sensitive mind the dread with 
which the last summons is associated. Death had no alarms 
for him. The messenger has but set down his hour-glass, 
and pushed gently open the door which was already ajar. 

" Millais has passed away, as he would have wished to do, 
within a few steps of the studio door; but Perth will miss 
him more than, in the nature of things, London can do, and 
the river will flow to the sea with the sorrow of one who has 
lost a lover, interpreter, and friend." 



Serious illness of Lord Heighten Heighten asks Millais to take his place as 
President of the Royal Academy Last meeting of the two friends Leighton's 
last letter to Millais The Academy banquet, 1895 Letter from Lord 
Rosebery A yachting trip to Jersey The juvenile octogenarian A grievous 
disappointment Pathetic letter to Frith Death of Lord Leighton Millais is 
elected President of the Royal Academy Letters of congratulation Serious 
illness Millais' last visits to the Academy The beginning of the end He 
says farewell to his old friends His death and burial Touching lines in 

TIME* THE REAPER" and "A Forerunner" were 
examples of those subject-pictures that Millais de 
lighted to paint. The former was commenced at Bowerswell 
while " Speak ! Speak ! " was in progress, and was finished 
in 1895, the head being painted from a photograph of him 
self taken in profile, with the addition of a white beard, 
which gave it a striking resemblance to portraits of his 

And now, in the early spring of this year, the Royal 
Academy was menaced with a heavy blow. To the deep 
regret of every member, Lord Leighton, the most brilliant 
and accomplished man who ever presided over its councils, 
was taken seriously ill. Heart disease, from which he had 
suffered for some months past, assumed so serious an aspect 
that, under the advice of two eminent physicians, he was 
compelled to relinquish, for a time at least, the arduous work 
and responsibilities attaching to the presidential chair. A 
special meeting -of the council was therefore held, when, in 
reply to the President's observations, Millais was deputed to 
assure him that they would cheerfully do his work amongst 
themselves so long as might be necessary to the restoration 
of his health, and would find someone to preside in his place 
at the coming banquet. 



The next morning came the following letter: 

From Lord Leighton, P.R.A. 


" March 27 th, 1895, 9.45 p.m. 

" DEAR MILLAIS, Fresh from the meeting and your 
touching and affectionate expressions, I write a little word 
which may at first startle you, that you must not answer 
at once, and that you cannot push away. 

" My dear old friend, there is only one man whom every 
body, without exception, will acclaim in the chair of the 
President on May 4th a great artist, loved by all yourself. 
You will do it admirably, that I well know; and you will 
have the huge advantage of doing it for once only instead 
of year after year. You have a misgiving about your voice ; 
but, in the first place, it is only at first that your hoarseness 
hinders you ; your voice warms as you go on ; and, in the 
second, it is quite immaterial whether you are heard all over 
the room. Those nearest will hear and enjoy you ; the rest 
may be read, as the whole English-speaking world will read 
in the columns of the Times (the reporter is at your elbow, 
and you will give him your MS.) what you say on this 

" Dear Millais, every man in the profession will rejoice 
to see you in that chair on that night ; and let an old friend 
of forty years say you may not refuse this honour. You 
said very kindly just now that all my brothers would come 
to my aid at this juncture. I ask you, in full confidence, 
to do so. Ever yours affectionately, 


To a request so charmingly and so touchingly made there 
could be but one answer. Millais wrote at once accepting 
it as a command, and assuring his friend that everything 
should be done as he wished. Only one speech, he under 
stood, would be required of him at the banquet ; he would 
get through it as best he could, and for the rest he could not 
but indulge the hope that before another season came round 
the President would be well enough to resume his duties. 

" Show Sunday," at the end of March, was to be poor 
Leighton's last day in England, and I went with my father 


to his house in Melbury Road, where we found him along 
with a crowd of picture-lovers, and the usual' array of so- 
called " smart " people. With his characteristic urbanity he 
was showing them his last beautiful works, " Flaming June " 
and "Lachrymae;" but what a change a few months of 
suffering had wrought in him ! He seemed nervous, and 
looked for the first time really ill, interested, however, to 
all appearance, in the things around him, and even more 
attentive than usual to his guests. To my father he was 
cordiality itself, and on our taking leave he said to him in 
a half-whisper, "Come and see me quietly to-morrow, old 
boy. I go the next day." 

The meeting and the parting were alike sad to Millais. 
Never before had he recognized the serious character of 
Leighton's illness, and his heart sank within him at the 
thought that never again would his old and belox r ed friend 
occupy the presidential chair, and possibly he would see his 
face no more. 

Leighton went off to Algeria and the sunshine of Biskra, 
whence he wrote several charming letters to Millais thanking 
him for (amongst other things) " so generously relieving 
him of the duties of his office." Here is his last letter to 
my father : 

From Lord Leighton, P.R.A. 


"May igtfij 1895. 

" DEAR MILLAIS, Although I had already, some little 
time ago, written to you to say how charmed I was to hear 
of your great success (of which I for one was sure in 
advance), and how much touched I was by your generous 
allusions to myself; and again, in a postscript, to express 
my warm satisfaction at the purchase of your beautiful and 
impressive picture [ IC Speak ! Speak ! "], I must write one line 
again to thank you for your letter, which just reaches me 
from Tangier. 

" That your throat would clear up under the excitement of 
the moment, experience has taught me; but I am grieved to 
hear that you have relapsed into your former condition ; and 
indeed one of my reasons for writing is to urge you to give 
thought to the Swedish form of massage which Lauder 
Brunton and Broadbent both think highly of, and which did 

^,^'jr;:' 1 ,,; : 



'^JL ?Ty w ^ l ^3to* 

By permission of Mr, E. M. Lenny 


my general health immense good. Now I can, by certain 
movements, stop an incipient attack of my pain. . . . But 
do try. You can yacht afterwards all the same. 

" What a state Jersey would be in ! But you will have to 
make speeches, old boy. 

" I am longing to see c St. Stephen.' He was n't in the 
studio that day, you know. I have been a little thrown back 
by long railway journeys and bad food, but I am distinctly 
better than when you last saw me. 

" Always affectionately yours, 


In spite of poor Leighton's absence, the Academy banquet 
was a great success. For more than a month Millais had 
been preparing for it, always dreading, nevertheless, that 
his voice would not be heard, or would possibly break 
down altogether ; and now when the time had come to give 
vent to it, he played his part so bravely that everyone was 
gratified, "fulfilling the duties of President," as the Arch 
bishop of Canterbury humorously remarked, " with such 
geniality and such eloquence, when we could hear him, and 
such perfect dumb-show when we could not" 

An unfortunate mistake of his only added to the amusement 
of the evening. Instead of the Archbishop of Canterbury, 
he called upon the Archbishop of York to respond to the 
toast of "The Guests," whereupon his Grace of York rose 
slowly to his feet, and with consternation in his face ex 
pressed his surprise at the call, and his lack of preparation 
u to address this illustrious assembly." 

Millais hastened to correct the mistake, and thereupon 
the Archbishop of Canterbury brought down the house by 
commencing his speech (according to the Times" report) 
in this wise : " Sir John Millais, your Royal Highnesses, 
my Lords, and Gentlemen, If the Archbishop of York was 
never more taken by surprise in his life, I can say that no 
one ever experienced a greater sense of relief (laughter) 
than I did at that moment. I thought that I had got off 
altogether, and now, after all, I find that I am to die a 
second death. (Laughter.)" 

^ His speech, with its touching reference to his associations 
with the Academy and its President, was much eulogised 
by the Press ; but what pleased him most of all was this 
charming letter : 


From Lord Rosebery. 


"May 6t/i, 1895. 

" MY DEAR MILLAIS, I must repeat in writing what I felt 
and said on Saturday night that I never heard anything 
more exquisite or delightful than your speech (for you only 
made one). It enchanted all who heard it, and will help to 
bring health to Leighton when he reads it. 

" I hope your voice is returning. 

" Yours ever, 


During the summer he took a short yachting trip to Jersey 
and back in the Palatine along with two widow ladies (Mrs. 
Watney, the owner of the yacht, and her friend Lady Met- 
calfe), to his great enjoyment and the immense improvement 
of his health. He came home in the highest spirits, and 
risking the displeasure of his family at so vile a pun, referred 
to the trip as " the widow's cruise." 

It seemed indeed to be the turning-point towards complete 
recovery ; for, a few weeks later, while shooting with his 
friend Mr. Julius Reiss at Corrie Muckloch, Perthshire, the 
additional tonic of the fine Highland air worked such wonders 
for him that, on his reporting the improvement to his doctor, 
Sir Richard Quain, that juvenile octogenarian expressed him 
self most hopefully as to the case. Here is his letter: 

From Sir Richard Quain, M.D. 


" August $Qth, 1895. 

" DEAR MILLAIS, I am delighted with your report of 
your health and, if possible, more with your determination 
to keep it good. You can, and you must, for your health 
and life are precious, not only for yourself and your surround 
ings, but to the world of Art, which owes you so much and 
will owe you still more ; for you can and will, by care, do as 
well as you ever did. More I cannot say. . , . 

" People have been very good to me in the grouse and 
salmon way, and yesterday Fiue sent me a capital haunch. 
I might like the stalking if I were on the hills, but I had 
my innings for some twenty-five years. I was looking only 

i8 9 5] 


yesterday at the list of my bags. My biggest (twenty-seven 
days, including Sundays, which did not come in for sport) 
was seventeen stags and six hinds not bad for a cockney 
doctor! That was In Glenmore Forest. I once said to a 
little lady that, spending all my time curing people, I went to 
Scotland for a change killing. With an arch smile, she 
said, ' Not quite so great a change ! 5 

" I will not bore you with any more nonsense, so only beg 
to offer my kind regards to my lady, and all good wishes for 
the great R.A. I am, faithfully yours, 

" R. QUAIN." 

Showing the Saint with black hair 

To me too, on September ist, my father wrote in 
the most encouraging terms : "I had excellent sport at 
Reiss," he says, " killing to my own gun seventy brace of 
driven birds. In the four days we (six guns) got upwards 
of 400 brace. Now I am keen on the fishing, which ought 
to be good this year, as this last week has been one con 
tinuous spate, To-morrow I hope to be into them." 

One incident of this year is interesting from the sporting 
point of view. During the winter a fallen tree had drifted 
down the river and settled itself in one of the best pools in 

II 21 


Upper Stobhall. One day Sir J. Wolfe Barry lost a good 
fish by running on to it ; so my father gave orders for it to be 
cleared away, and, some two days afterwards, thinking that 
his orders had been carried out, he lost while casting there the 
heaviest fish he had ever hooked perhaps the largest fish 
ever seen on the Tay. From his great experience he knew 
that this monster was not foul-hooked, for, as he afterwards 
described the incident, " the beast, even when given all the 
strain I dare put on, fairly made me spin about like a 
teetotum." After worrying on for an hour and a half, during 
which the fish, never showing a fin, worked down seven or 
eight hundred yards, it suddenly seemed to take a new lease 
of life and went full speed up stream right to the head of the 
pool, towing the angler along the bank. Imagine his 
astonishment when at this point the fisherman told him to 
try and keep the fish clear of the sunken tree ! That was 
now impossible ; the salmon went straight for it and broke 
the cast ! What happened then I leave to the imagination 
of my readers. Suffice it to say that ever afterwards he 
spoke of the incident in saddened tones, as one of the keenest 
disappointments of his life. 

Writing to his brother William, on October 1 3th, he says : 
" To-morrow is my last day on the river, where I have worked 
like a slave with indifferent success, considering the water, 
which has been perfect nearly all the season. Somehow the 
fish would n't rise when they were fresh and first came up, 
and now they only occasionally rise to a fly. Of course you 
will see in the papers all sorts of grand reports about the 
fishing, but the truth is there is general disappointment; my 
number (with one fish to-morrow) will be forty your fish 
about the biggest. However, the exercise has been of great 
benefit to me, and / never felt better, although my voice 
continues feeble." 

A month later his health gave way again, and he was 
obviously somewhat alarmed about his throat. Yet he 
managed to pluck up spirits enough to write as follows : 

To Mr. Frith, R. A. 


"November 15^, 1895. 

DEAR FRITH, Don't be alarmed at seeing my hand 
writing. I am not going to ask you for a temporary loan, 

"A DISCIPLE." 1895 
Gallery of British Art 


or any favour ; I am only so bored here that I must write to 
an old friend, when I can find one, and tell him I shall be 
glad of a line containing any news of the world that he may 
think of, to cheer my solitude. I have only one pleasant 
walk here, the Hill of Kinnoull, where I always feel a kind of 
St. Hubert, and expect to meet the stag with a cross between 
its horns all thick, dark, fir wood only Hubert was n't deaf 
and dumb) as I am. 

"Now, I see, Sala is going not so long after Yates 

whilst our friend C defies the grasp of the skeleton hand. 

His coat-tails somehow always give way, and he escapes. 
I come up to town the end of this month, to paint perchance 
to die. My ailments make the club almost impossible, so 
I am restricted in all my joys, old man, as you are. I hear 
bad accounts of Leighton, whom (with a father between 
90 and 100) I thought good for 190; and the newspaper 
correspondents alone know what is to happen in the Royal 
Academy if anything in the shape of a new President is 

" Lucky dog, you ! On a rainy day you can go to the 
Crystal Palace garden to look at the Mastadons and Ichis- 
saurus (cant spell it) in the middle of the fountains, whilst 
here I see only mist. 

" Ever yours, 

44 J. E. MILLAIS." 

And now the door of Bowerswell closed behind him for 
the last time. Never again would he see the green terraces 
and yew hedges of his northern home ; never again the fir 
woods and the rushing Tay, which had been to him both his 
joy and his inspiration ; never again the familar faces of the 
many friends that he left behind. All were to be no more, 
for the Great Reaper had stepped across the threshold and 
marked him for the sickle. 

The " bad accounts of Leighton " were a source of ^ great 
anxiety to him, not only for his friend's sake, but in the 
interest of the Academy, of which he was so distinguished 
an ornament. For himself (as announced in the Press), the 
state of his health precluded the thought of his acting as 
President longer than might be necessary, his mind being 
rather bent on giving up work altogether; but later on he 
was induced to change his views. 


In January, 1896, poor Leighton died, and was buried in 
St. Paul's. Millais, of course, attended the funeral, and, at 
the request of his colleagues, bore with him the splendid 
wreath of the Academy, and deposited it on the coffin so 
soon as it was lowered into the crypt. 

Then his friends on the Council and other members of the 
profession began to gather around him ; and, listening to their 
solicitations, he wrote to his brother in the following terms : 

To Mr. William Millais. 


"February $th, 1896. 

" DEAR WILLIAM, Do not be surprised if, after all my 
resolutions against being President, I am placed in the 
chair. I am assured that it is necessary and expedient for 
me to act. 

" The work will be often terribly irksome, but I have 
thought it over seriously, and I see that the Royal Academy 
might suffer if I decline. At any rate (if elected, as I have 
no doubt I shall be), I will be P.R.A. until we have 
settled a bit after this calamity. . . . 

u Your affectionate brother, 

" JACK. 

" This comes just as I was dreaming of retirement! " 

The election came off on February 2oth, 1896, when (with 
the exception of his own vote, which was given in favour of 
Calderon, the chairman at the meeting) Millais was unani 
mously appointed as President He looked, as everyone 
noticed, very pale and ill ; but, cheered by this signal proof 
of the appreciation of his colleagues, he returned home in 
better spirits than when he left, and fairly hopeful as to the 
future. For though Felix Semon, the great throat specialist, 
pronounced him to be suffering from a malignant tumour for 
which an operation was necessary, other eminent men thought 
otherwise, and his sanguine temperament led him to accept 
their opinions rather than Semon's. 

The flood of congratulations that now poured in upon him 
was quite overwhelming. Every artist in England seemed 
impelled to express his delight, and (as may be imagined) it 

By permission of Sir Charles Tennant 


was no small business to answer all these letters, however 
delightful the task. Enough for these pages to give two 
or three of them, from eminent and well-known men, as 
characteristic of the whole. And first from Mr. John 
Collier, who, as a representative British artist, was entitled 
to speak for the whole body : 

From the Hon. John Collier, R.A. 


"February zisf, 1896. 

" DEAR SIR JOHN MILLAIS, I feel that I must send you 
a line, not to congratulate you for your acceptance of the 
Presidentship cannot add to your fame but to congratulate 
ourselves, the English artists, that you have undertaken this 
heavy burden for the honour of our Art. 

" It is a great thing for our profession that the official head 
of it should be the greatest British painter of the century. 

" I know you will be overwhelmed with letters, and I 
ought not to add an unnecessary one to the number; but I 
feel very strongly in this matter, and also I have the memory 
of too many kindnesses received from you to let me hold my 
tongue. Yours very sincerely, 


From Sir W. V. Harcourt, Bart. 


"February 2ist, 1896. 

" DEAR MILLAIS, I cannot fail to write one line though 
I know it is unnecessary to tell you to accept my heartfelt 
sympathy and pleasure at the event which has placed you in 
the great position which your genius and the long labours 
of an honoured life have so well earned for you. 

" I reckon myself as one of your oldest and most attached 
friends, and as such am most deeply interested in this happy 

" The recollections of the old days are treasured up as years 
gather over our heads. 

" Your sincere friend, 



From Mr. Holman Hunt, R.A. 


"February 2&h, 1896. 

" MY DEAR MILLIAS, I don't know whether it is definitely 
settled yet that you shall be the President of the Royal 
Academy, but I have no doubt that it soon will be, for, 
whatever differences of interests there may be among the 
members, when once it was known that there was a possi 
bility of your accepting the post, there could have been, 
and there will be, but one feeling about the surpassing fitness 
of the choice of yourself. . . . 

" That you may hold it for some years is my hearty wish, 
but I trust that you will not make any kind of promise to 
keep it for life. The post is quite a different thing to fill, 
in the amount of work required, to what it was in Sir Joshua 
Reynolds' time. London, with six million of inhabitants, 
and about three-quarters of these calling themselves ' artists,' 
would wear any man to death if he felt there was no escape 
for him. It would assuredly interfere with his opportunities 
for work very mischievously. I was sorry that so true an 
artist as Leighton allowed himself to be hampered with the 
duties permanently. ... He did the duties magnificently, 
but he could have worked magnificently also, and the work 
would have remained for all generations; and this may be 
the same with you. 

" Give my felicitations to Lady Millais, who will have 
to take so large a part in the new honour; and give my love 
to Mary. 

" Yours very affectionately, 


" Did you ever hear of Lear's pun ? which would be more 
appropriate now. It was that the Millais-nium of Art had 
come. You have gone a letter higher from P.-R.B. to 

March now set in with a rigour that added greatly to 
Millais' discomfort His voice, once so powerful, sank to 
a whisper, and at times he could hardly make himself heard. 
There was, however, a great deal to be done in view of 


the coming exhibition, and with characteristic bravery he 
devoted his whole time and attention to the work. Specially 
trying was the month of April, when, day after day, he 
had to act as Chairman of the Hanging Committee a task 
at once so responsible and so exhausting that his health well- 
nigh broke down altogether before it was finished. He 
recovered himself, however, sufficiently to take a final^ survey 
of the exhibition before it was opened to the public, and 
to welcome, with his usual geniality, the artists whose works 
had been accepted. 

A writer in the Daily News of August i4th, 1896, thus 
describes one of his last visits to the Academy : 

"There was something very pathetic in the way Millais 
lino-ered round the galleries of the Academy during the last 
days before it opened for the first time under his president 
ship. He was in the rooms on the Saturday before the 
private view (the last of the members' varnishing days) 
shaking hands with old friends, and saying, in a hoarse 
whisper, which told its tale tragically enough, that he was 
better. He came again on Monday that was the outsiders' 
varnishing day. The galleries were full of painters, young 
and old, hard at their work much to do and little time to 
do it in when someone said, c Millais is in the next room. 5 
Young men and old, they all looked in, mournfully realising 
it might be their last chance to see the greatest of their 
brethren. There he was, leaning on the Secretary, and 
slowly going his round. One young painter, perched upon 
a ladder, varnishing his canvas, felt his leg touched, but 
was too busy to turn round. Again he was interrupted. It 
was the President, who, in a scarcely audible whisper, wished 
to congratulate him on his work. That was on Monday. 
He came again on Tuesday. There was discussion amongst 
a few of the members about a picture that in the hanging 
had not got so good a place as it deserved. 'Take one 
of my places, 5 he said; and he meant it. It was not the 
first time he had offered to make way, giving up his own 
position to an outsider." 

On Saturday, May 2nd, he went to the Academy to 
receive the Prince of Wales. But now the disease had 
made such rapid advance that he could hardly walk round 
the room. After one or two efforts to keep pace with the 
Prince, he began to hang back, and His Royal Highness, 


on learning the cause, very kindly insisted on his returning 
home at once. He then left never to return again. 

And now the conviction grew upon him that his days 
were numbered. More than ever he liked to have his 
children about him, and as I had now adopted Art as a 
profession, he delighted to give me all the help in his power 
by way of practical suggestions and advice. 

As I write, the last morning he spent in his beloved studio 
comes back vividly to my mind. I had long wanted him 
to paint " The Last Trek," a drawing of which he had 
kindly supplied as frontispiece to my book, A Breath from 
the Veldt, and Mr. Briton Riviere had also urged him to 
do so;* and now pointing to a large white canvas which 
stood on one of the easels he whispered, "Well, Johnnie, 
you see I have got the canvas at last, and I am really 
going to begin c The Last Trek ' to-day." 

The subject appealed strongly to his feelings. It was that 
of a scene I had myself witnessed in South Africa a white 
hunter dying in the wilderness attended by his faithful Zulus. 
The title, too, seemed to please him (perchance as having 
some relation to his' thoughts about himself) ; and after 
talking for some time on various points such as the atmo 
sphere of the southern plains, and the appearance of the 
parched and sun-cracked soil he suddenly paused in his 
walk about the room, and, putting his hand to his forehead, 
said solemnly and slowly, " This is going to kill me ! I feel 
it, I feel it!" 

The idea seemed to be but momentary. In another 
minute he was quite calm again, and, throwing down his 
palette, which was already prepared, he pulled out his cards, 
and quietly commenced a game of " Patience." 

An hour later he felt so extremely unwell that he retired 
to his own room downstairs, closing the studio door behind 
him for the last time. 

He had commenced, though he knew it not, " The Last 
Trek " ! 

* Mr. Briton Riviere, R.A., writes: " On one of our last meetings alone, 
before his fatal illness stopped all effort, we got upon the subject of your African 
book and its illustrations. I told him how much I had been impressed by his 
own beautiful frontispiece, 'The Last Trek,' and that I hoped he would paint 
a large picture of it in the style of his Arctic explorer. His face lighted up 
at once, and he said, 'I'll do it.'" 6 * 


!C ^ 

" * 

W V 

3 1 

H 'I 


1896] HIS DEATH 335 

Henceforward he was a prisoner in his own apartment. 
Everything that the highest medical skill could suggest was 
done to prolong his life; but there was no arresting the 
decline that now set in. Even to whisper became a great 
exertion for him ; he suffered, however, but little pain, and 
the presence of his wife and family, who were about him 
night and day, added greatly to his comfort. 

He was glad to see, also, now and then, such old friends as 
Mr. Bancroft, Mr. Chudleigh, Mr. George Smith (of Smith 
and Elder), Mrs. Richmond Ritchie, Mrs. Jopling-Rowe, 
Lord James, Sir William Harcourt, Lord Rosebery, the 
Duke of Westminster, and Mr. and Mrs. Perugini, all of 
whom came in from time to time. Most of the Academicians, 
too, and many of his old Garrick friends, including Mr. Toole 
and Sir Arthur Sullivan, called and saw him, and he specially 
sent for Mr. Ernest Crofts, a newly-elected Royal Academi 
cian, that he might shake hands with him, and present his 
congratulations. The Princess Louise, too, honoured him 
with a call, and cheered him with her most gracious and 
unaffected sympathy ; and Sir Edward Burne-Jones, though 
himself unwell and soon, alas ! to follow his departing friend, 
made a drawing of him, which he afterwards bequeathed to 
my sister Mrs. Stuart- Wortley. 

Too painful were it to follow any further the progress of 
the fatal malady from which he suffered. Enough to say 
that in May his condition became so serious that tracheotomy 
had to be resorted to, and was skilfully performed by Dr. 
Treves, assisted by Mr. Hames, F.R.C.S., and that, thus relieved 
from the most distressing feature of his complaint, he lingered 
on in comparative comfort until death put an end to his 

By command of the Queen bulletins of the patient's health 
were occasionally sent to Her Majesty. The Princess 
Louise also made frequent inquiries, as well as sending lovely 

My mother, too, attended at Windsor in compliance with 
the Royal command, and was most graciously received by 
Her Majesty, who expressed in the kindest way her sympathy 
with the dying man and his family. 

Before the end of the month he had sunk into a comatose 
state, significant of the coming end, and in the afternoon of 
August 1 3th, in the presence of his wife, my brother Everett, 
and two of my sisters, he breathed his last. 


During his long illness his frame, once so robust, had 
wasted away to a mere shadow of his former self; his beard 
and moustache, too, had been allowed to grow ; and as he 
lay in his last sleep, with the lines of care and suffering all 
effaced, his face looked like that of a mediaeval saint. In his 
usual felicitous manner Lord Rosebery noticed this in a most 
kind and sympathetic letter to my mother : " But in any 
case my memory of your husband must always be one of 
charm without alloy, for even of his death-bed my recollection 
is one of divine beauty and patience." * 

By request of the Royal Academy, who undertook the 
management of his funeral, he was buried in St. Paul's 
Cathedral on August 2oth, 1896, the pall being borne by 
Mr. Holman Hunt, Mr. Philip Calderon, R.A., Sir Henry 
Irving, Sir George Reid, P.R.S.A., Viscount Wolseley, the 
Earl of Rosebery, the Earl of Carlisle, and the Marquis of 

And there he lies in "Painters' Corner" in the same niche 
with his friend Leighton, and with his illustrious predecessors 
Sir Joshua Reynolds, Sir Christopher Wren, Sir Thomas 
Lawrence, Benjamin West, Opie, Fuseli, and Sir Edgar 

So went to his long home (in the words of the Standard] 
"the very type of the true Englishman genial, sincere, 
hopeful, content with his own lot, and full of benignity to 
others who trod, sometimes with weary feet, the road that led 
him to renown." 

There is something in the sound of Punch sadly out of 
harmony with an occasion like this ; but those who know the 
tenderness that underlies the humour of that brilliant peri 
odical will not be surprised at my repeating here the charming 
and most sympathetic lines that appeared in it immediately 
after the funeral. 

* Writing to my brother Everett, Lord Rosebery said : " I cannot resist say 
ing that, while no one admired your father's genius more than I did, I loved him 
even jmore than I admired him. There was about him a charm of manliness and 
simplicity that I have never seen equalled, and which no human being could resist. 
It showed itself publicly and conspicuously in that last exquisite speech which he 
made to the Academy at the dinner of last year, which moved me more than any 
other speech that I can recollect. Has any likeness been preserved of him as he 
lay dying ? I was urgent with your sister that this should be done, for I never saw 
so beautiful a sight, putting its pathos on one side." 



President of the Royal Academy. 


' ' * A combination and a form indeed, 

Where every god did seem to set his seal, 
To give the world assurance of a MAN.' 

" Hamlet, Act III., Scene 4. 

" AT last Death brings his Order of Release, 
And our great English painter lies at peace, 

Amidst a nation's sorrow. 
A man in heart and Art, in soul and frame, 
By love encompassed, and secure of fame, 
Through history's long to-morrow. 

" The world seems greyer, gloomier, far less young, 
For loss of him, the free of touch and tongue, 

Nature's own child in both. 
By glowing canvas or by rushing stream, 
With brush or rod, he was no thrall of dream, 
Feebleness, fad, or sloth. 

" Fresh as the morn, and frank as noon's full flush, 
In friendship as in Art, with speech or brush, 

Health, heartiness, and power 
Were his, from earliest critic- chidden days, 
To that fine prime when universal praise 

Hailed genius in full flower. 

" Men loved the man, and Art the artist crowned. 
The brush that pictured poor ' Ophelia ' drowned 

In young Pre-Raphaelite days, 
Glowed with a virile vigour, and sweet charm 
Too masterful to take abiding harm 
From mere mimetic craze. 

" English he was, and England best inspired 
His skill unfailing and his toil untired. 

On his strong canvas live 
Her loveliest daughters and her noblest sons, 
All that to a great age, which swift outruns, 
Its greatest glories give. 

" And he among those glories takes high rank. 
Painter more masterly or friend more frank 

Its closing scarce shall show. 

Our good, great MILLAIS gone ! And yet not dead ! 
His best lives on, though that worn, noble head 
In rest at last lies low ! " 

* By permission of the proprietors of Punch. 

IT 22 


His Art life and methods The joy of work Methods Materials Models 
The difficulty of painting children Sitters and their peculiarities " The most 
beautiful woman in the world" Millais as an animal painter Modelling 
Millais as a critic His views on Art Latter-day illustration Advice to young 
students The National Gallery Sir Henry Tate The Gallery of British 
Art Critics Notes by Mrs. Perugini. 

EVERY artist, says Balzac, must pass through three 
different periods : " The first third of such a life is 
spent in struggling, the second third in getting a foothold, 
and the last third in defending it." And Millais' life was no 
exception to the rule. His work nevertheless was to him a 
lifelong joy, chequered only by difficulties and disappoint 
ments such as every true artist must occasionally encounter. 
" The joy of working " was his even in the days when all the 
powers of the Press were arrayed against him and insults 
were heaped upon him on every side ; and still more was it 
his when "Time that trieth all things" had given him the 

As to his methods, they varied according to circumstances 
of time, place, and subject. In his Pre-Raphaelite days and 
the intermediate period, which may be said to have ended 
with the "Vale of Rest," he sat down to his work, getting up 
only now and then to note the effect from a distance ; but as 
the years went on in fact from the commencement of 
" Rosalind and Celia " to the end of his career he stood 
up before his easel and constantly walked to and fro, adding 
to his painting only a few touches at a time. His big looking- 
glass was also in frequent use, enabling him to see his work 
as reflected from various angles, and to detect in an instant 
any defect in drawing. 

In the early days, too, before commencing a picture he 
would make a large number of sketches, and often a highly- 
finished drawing in black-and-white, of the subject he intended 
to paint; while for " The Rescue " he made, as we have seen, 



a big cartoon, which he afterwards traced on the canvas. 
Later on, however, he contented himself with rough sketches 
in charcoal on the canvas itself, eventually making these only 
suggestively as he became more sure of his aim. 

Subject-pictures were the only exception to this rule. For 
these he always made pencil sketches just a few lines to 
indicate the broad features of the composition while portraits 
he would commonly start without any drawing at all, com 
mencing at the head, and generally securing a satisfactory 
likeness in two sittings of an hour each. 

It was to the finishing of his paintings, the working out of 
every detail, that he mainly devoted his time. Nothing would 
content him short of the full realisation of his ideal ; and to 
achieve this was often a sore trial to his patience. "The 
Woodman's Daughter " distressed him greatly because a 
little jay's feather amongst a mass of herbage refused to go 
right ; and for a whole month " The Vale of Rest " was a 
misery to him because the line of a woman's back conflicted 
with the rest of the composition, and he did not see how to 
prevent it. And so it is, as Mr. Van Prinsep said at the 
Literary Fund dinner the other day, " Art may seem an easy 
thing to some people ; but it is so difficult that even the most 
successful men have felt appalled with the hugeness of their 

In the days of his youth he liked to have people about him 
to talk to when he was at work, or to read, or even to sing to 
him ; but later on he allowed no one to come near him when 
at work, finding that the slightest movement on the part of a 
companion, or any sound except that of distant music, broke 
the current of his thoughts. During the last few years of his 
life, however, he would not object to the presence of one of 
us at a time, so long as there was no moving about the room ; 
and in this way I learnt the meaning of those games of 
Patience that he so often resorted to in the course of his 
work. After pondering for some time over a difficulty, he 
would draw the card-table out in front of his picture, and 
while apparently absorbed in dealing out the cards, would 
every now and then take a momentary look at his work, 
until at last perhaps after an hour's play he would suddenly 
jump up, seize his palette and brushes, and dash in a few 
broad touches that set everything right. Thus was achieved 
in one hour more and better work than he could have accom 
plished in three hours by the old Pre-Raphaelite methods. 


His materials, including the extra smooth canvas and even 
vellums that he used in the Pre-Raphaelite days, were ob 
tained from Messrs. Roberson, of Long Acre. He generally 
preferred a grey-tinted canvas, and had it made too large for 
the stretcher, the latter being made with rounded edges so as 
to avoid marking the canvas in case he wished to enlarge his 
work. In later days he used prepared panels, smooth canvas, 
millboards (for black-and-white work), and once or twice 
semi-absorbent Roman canvas, which came into fashion 
about 1885. The very last order he gave was on February 
igth, 1896, for "plain canvas, 4gfx3i ; extra canvas all 

For portrait painting he used an invention of his own in 
xSSi a thick, coarse canvas heavily coated with a prepara 
tion showing strong brush-marks by which the painting of 
the background was greatly simplified ; but for the face and 
hands of the figure he first scraped those portions of the 
canvas quite smooth with a piece of cuttle-fish or a bit of 
glass. This brush-marked canvas is now called by his 

The vehicles he employed were quick and slow-drying 
copal, also (after 1850) Roberson's medium. The Pre- 
Raphaelites were most particular in the preparation of their 
colours, often making them themselves from the raw material 
a circumstance that no doubt contributed largely to the 
preservation of their freshness. Millais, however, soon found 
that Messrs. Roberson were as careful as himself in that 
matter, so he gave up making his own paints, though to the 
last he stuck to the old fashion of procuring his zinc-white in 
bladders or in china pots, lest the metal of the tubes should 
spoil it. These- china pots (2 Ibs. each) were a great con 
venience to him when painting a snow-scene, enabling him 
to get a good brushful of paint at a time ; but it was only in 
later years that he ventured on subjects of that sort, fearing 
as he did that the lead in the white might ultimately turn a 
bad colour. 

As to brushes, other than those in ordinary use, he pre 
ferred one now known by his name, but which was in use 
before artists' colour-men came into existence a brush made 
of hog's hair, held with a quill and bound with string as 
he found that the metal of the ordinary brush was liable to 
make scratches on the canvas. 

For models (as will have been seen already) he was largely 

By permission of Mrs. Lehmann 



indebted to personal friends, and still more frequently to his 
own daughters, who were constantly requisitioned. Portraits 
of* my sister Effie are seen in " My First Sermon," " My 
Second Sermon," " The Minuet," " New Laid Eggs," " The 
Wolfs Den," etc.; of Alice in "Sleeping," "Sisters," 
" The Picture of Health," " Mrs. Stuart-Wortley," and " The 
Grey Lady"; and of Sophy in "The Flood," "Still for a 
Moment," " Punchinello," " Clarissa," and " Princess Elizabeth 
in the Tower." 

For the rest professionals were engaged ; and very charm 
ing some of them were. Some, too, had interesting tales to 
tell of themselves and their experiences in life, sad or amusing, 
as the case might be ; and some well, models are not always 
perhaps what their name would seem to imply ; they vary, 
like other people, and whether good, bad, or indifferent is 
of small moment to the artist, so long as they serve his 

Of all models the most difficult to deal with are undoubtedly 
children. A man must, first of all, understand them and 
their winsome ways; understand too how to win their hearts 
and allay their fears at the sight of a stranger. And then 
the portrait-painter is but at the beginning of his task. For 
some little time at least they must be made to sit still ; and 
only those who have tried it know how hard this is to accom 
plish. " It's no use whistling jigs to a milestone," says the 
Irish proverb ; and equally useless is it to reason with a 
child. They must be amused, each of them in its own way; 
or if old enough to appreciate the virtues of bribery and 
corruption, these forces may be employed to advantage. 

Millais was quite an expert in this line of business. Being 
naturally fond of children, he liked to study their ways and 
make notes of their most fascinating attitudes as they played 
about in the parks and gardens, and would often stop to talk 
with some little creature who seemed to have lost its way. 
They, too, took naturally to him, and it would be strange 
indeed if he failed to win the heart of any child after two 
minutes' talk in his studio. A variety-entertainment was 
always ready for them there lovely dolls, picture-books, 
boxes of chocolates, etc. and, for the elder ones, a never- 
ending supply of fairy tales, that kept them as happy as he 
was himself while recording their charms on canvas. 

Superficial observers were apt to think he had no real 
sympathy with childhood, " or he would not have painted it 



so ugly"; but, as a critic thoughtfully observes, "the fact 
is that he saw the beauty of childhood even in ugly children ; 
and that children, pretty or ugly, he never tired of painting. 
From plain children to pretty children, the evolution was a 
simple one, and the charge which we so often hear that 
Millals used his emancipation from the bonds of the Pre- 
Raphaelite Brotherhood to cast aside great artistic themes 

By permission of A. Tooth and Sons 

for the rendering of pretty girls that the public would like, 
the dealers buy, and the newspapers publish, is worthy only 
of persons ignorant of his work. From the very beginning 
children have inspired him. Probably no eminent painter, 
except Edouard Frere and Josef Israels, has painted so many, 
and rested his reputation so frequently upon his realisation of 
them, even when he knew that the types he chose were not 
to the public taste." 



Touching sitters and would-be sitters for portraits he had 
many tales to tell. One charming old gentleman, well 
advanced in the sere and yellow period, had recently taken 
to himself a young and pretty wife, who came with him to 
the studio and insisted on remaining there while his portrait 
was being painted. But it was not to be. To the great 
amusement of the artist she lavished so much affection upon 

By permission of A . Tooth and Sons 

her husband as, leaning over him, she arranged the flower in 
his button-hole, brushed off here and there a speck of dust, 
and generally touched up his toilet, that at last, conscious of 
the absurdity of the situation, the poor old man blushed 
violently, and Millais w r as obliged to insist upon her retire 

On another occasion Mrs. W , a handsome woman of 

the Juno type, came to sit, and Millais succeeded in obtaining 


a life-like portrait But, unfortunately, it did not please the 
lady. What she had hoped was that he would present her, 
after the fashion of some of his portraits, as a woman of the 
soft, clinging, essentially dependent type of beauty in fact, 
the very opposite of what she was herself and on his de 
clining to alter the portrait, both she and her husband made 
such uncomplimentary remarks that he at once let them off 
their bargain and had the picture hung in the dining-room at 
Palace Gate. 

The sequel was amusing. . A certain royalty came to the 
studio one afternoon, accompanied by (amongst others) the 
disappointed husband, and in his passage through the room 

his eye fell upon the rejected picture. " Halloo, c W ," he 

said, " what a splendid portrait of your wife ! What is it 
doing here?" There was no reply; but next day came a 
cheque for the picture, which Millais, however, returned. 
Later on the picture passed temporarily into the hands of 
the Fine Art Society ; and on a demand from a Colonial 
gallery for one of Millais' works, the artist himself wrote to 
the Secretary, his old friend Joe Jopling, as follows: 

To Mr. Jopling. 


"January z^th, 1884. 

" DEAR JOE, What are you about with the picture ? If 
the committee hesitate, for goodness' sake send it back, and 
let me hang it up again, as there is an ugly gap on my wall, 
and I am not at all anxious to dispose of it. 

" Ever yours, 


"P. S. After all it might be thought not quite the thing 
on my part to let it go out of the country, when Mrs. W.'s 
children might some day like to possess it. What think 

you? W , who thought it a failure, ought to see it 

again. They behaved very badly about it; but that is no 
reason why I should do likewise." 

Eventually the picture was sold to the W family. 

" O wad some power the giftie gie us to see oursels as 
others see us ! " Only portrait painters of celebrity know 


what a relief such a " giftie " would bring to them. Quite 
amazing was the number of letters my father received in the 
course of his life from would-be sitters who insisted that 
either their charms or those of their children ought to be 
immortalised by the painter's art. And yet not one in 
twenty had the smallest pretension to beauty. One lady, 
who modestly described herself as "the most beautiful 
woman in the world," called again and again to see him, 
but was always refused admittance. Taught by past ex 
perience, he would not have his work broken in upon by a 
stranger, whose pretensions were probably false. 

He was talking of this to Mr. Gladstone one morning, 
while painting his portrait (1879) and discussing the subject of 
bores. Mr. Gladstone, who seemed much interested, thought 
it was a mistake not to give the lady a chance of displaying 
herself ; for surely, he argued, she must possess some great 
attraction to justify her persistence. Oddly enough at that 
moment she called again her features hidden by a long black 
veil. Mr. Gladstone's curiosity was now thoroughly aroused, 
and at his request the lady was shown upstairs to the studio. 
The denouement was somewhat curious. As the shrouded 
figure advanced into the room she slowly raised her veil; 
and there appeared a wretched creature in my father's 
words, " a Venus with the face of a battered tomato one 
of the most ill-favoured women I ever saw." He bowed 
her out with all the politeness at his command, and after 
a hearty laugh, in which his companion joined, proceeded 
with his work. 

Few, perhaps, even of those who are familiar with Millais' 
pictures have learnt to appreciate his power as an animal 
painter. Yet, as a critic remarks : "It is twelve years ago 
since Ruskin wrote to Mr. Gordon Crawford, * Looking back 
now on the painter's career ... I am more disposed to 
regret his never having given expression to his power of 
animal painting wholly unrivalled in its kind than any of 
the shortcomings in his actual work.' Had Millais given his 
attention to the lower instead of to the higher animals there 
is little doubt that he would have been a far greater animal 
painter than Landseer, though not so popular : for he never 
sought to humanise them as Landseer did, to the delight of 
an animal-loving, but somewhat unthinking- public. For 
Millais a dog was a dog, to be loved as such, and not half 



apotheosed into a human being. And he painted him with a 
vigour of brush, a perfection of colour, a knowledge of form 
and habit, and a sympathy that never degenerated into undue 
worship that together have made such animals as he has 
given us unsurpassed in English Art. It is true that he 
rarely painted a horse, and that the charger on which Sir 
Isumbras crosses the ford would not pass muster at 

By permission of A . Tooth and Sons 

Tattersall's. But in the execution of dogs he has never 
been excelled. The greyhounds in c Isabella/ the collies 
in The Order of Release ' and ' Effie Deans/ the blood 
hound in ' The Ransom,' the deerhound in * Twin Daughters 
of T. R. Hoare, Esq.' and in 'Peace Concluded, 1 and the 
smaller dogs in small pictures, are as full of dog-nature as of 
artistry. Not even M. Lambert or Madame Henrietta 
Ronner ever painted a better cat than that which appears 
in e Puss-in-Boots,' or recorded kittenly distress with more 



astonishing realism and success than in the dejected passenger 
in the cradle in ' A Flood.' 

" Lower in the scale we find two pictures of mice in 
c Mariana ' (1851) and c Cinderella ' (1881). The thirty years 
that separated the two pictures show no failure of observation. 
The curious twist that a mouse gives to its body when it 
stops and half settles in its flight, the strange stiff-suppleness 

By permission of 'A . Tooth and Sons 

of its tail, the curious mixture of boldness and timidity, and 
the intelligence in its bead-like eyes, are here reproduced 
with a skill that will be appreciated by every student of 
natural history. Again, the lizards in ' Ferdinand lured by 
Ariel ' have been painted in the queer poses so characteristic 
of them, as assuredly they have never been painted before, 
and the hawks and rooks, crows and pigeons, pheasants and 
robins, the kingfisher and the swallow all have been ren 
dered in a manner that silences the adverse critic." 


Of Millais' etching I have already spoken. Something, 
too, he knew about modelling with the clay " the art of 
drawing in the solid," as someone happily defined it but 
I do not remember having seen him practise it, beyond 
putting some finishing touches to a basset-hound my brother 
Everett once modelled and sent to the Grosvenor Exhibition. 
It would seem, however, that he had some skill in this line, 
as amongst the letters he received on being made President 
was one from Mr. Adams-Acton, an old gold-medallist and 
travelling student of the Royal Academy, who concludes his 
congratulations in the following words : I had the dis 
tinguished privilege of a visit to my studio in the Marylebone 
Road from you, many years ago, and as long as I live I shall 
never forget the masterly way in which you handled the 
sculptor's material, cut off the head of our mutual friend 
Frith, and readjusted the clay in a more suitable and char 
acteristic pose." 

Mr. Onslow Ford, R.A., also writes : " When he went 
round the sculpture gallery at the Royal Academy which 
I had arranged (1895), I was ver 7 much struck how in every 
case he instantly put his finger on the best quality in each 
particular work, and also made allowance for each shortcom 
ing, such as * Perhaps he was not very well at the time,' or 
1 Poor fellow, I suppose there were no pretty girls amongst 
his acquaintance, so he was obliged to do what he could get,' 
and so on. I shall never forget my parting with him, and 
never cease to feel grateful that it was my privilege to get 
to know him as well as I did in so short a time." 

" He was indeed," says Mr. Briton Riviere, R.A., one of 
my father's dearest and most valued friends, " the most 
sympathetic and appreciative of critics ; but this was not 
the result of weakness, nor would his good nature blind him 
to a fault for one moment. On the other hand his eye 
seemed instinctively to pick out what was good. When 
anyone said ' How poor this is,' or c How wrong that is,' he 
would often say, * Yes, I know that! But look here, how 
well this is understood, and how clever that is.' With 
unerring judgment he would choose what was good, and 
evidently took delight in doing so." 

" As a critic of an unfinished picture," continues the same 
writer, " he ^was invaluable, but not generally upon those 
lines that might have been expected. For instance, though 
himself gifted with a remarkable sense of colour, he hardly 

By permission of the Earl ofRosebery 


ever made any spontaneous suggestion as to colour, but 
generally confined his remarks to points of drawing. Upon 
this he was wonderfully clear-sighted and practical. He 
never pointed out an error without being able to show in 
detail how it should be rectified. Subtleties of perspective 
in a face which might well trouble many so-called c draughts 
men ' were patent to him by a kind of instinct. He not only 
saw such subtleties, but he could express them, as we find 
in his girls' and children's faces, where a slight dissimilarity 
between the two eyes, or a defection in a mouth from perfect 
symmetry sometimes so charming in Nature and lending 
much character to a face were never shirked by him, but 
given exactly as Nature had formed them and with Nature's 
charm and limitations with no loss, but rather a gain of real 

"Though, as I have said, he hardly ever offered any 
suggestions about colour, he was always ready with them 
when asked for, and in these again he was wonderfully clear, 
sometimes reducing his conclusions almost to a certainty. 
His suggestions, however bold, were always possible and 
nearly always in harmony with the artist's own scheme, 
in fact evidently made in order to strengthen and develop 
that. I remember on one occasion, when hanging the 
Academy summer exhibition with him, that we were con 
sidering the general effect of a particular wall which looked 
dull and ineffective, and his love of vitality in colouring at 
once asserted itself in a highly characteristic manner. He 
said, ' It wants waking up with some bits of red, like poppies 
in a field. It is all dull now, but a few touches of red will 
turn the whole wall into colour.' " 

Of his attitude towards his own works, Mr. Briton Riviere 
speaks with authority as one of the few men now living with 

whom he conversed freely on matters of Art. He says : 

" He was remarkably frank in the estimate of his own work, 
and knew perfectly well, making no secret of his knowledge, 
how permanent his reputation was likely to be. Even when 
suffering from that occasional depression that must haunt 
the most sanguine member of his profession, I do not think 
he ever wavered in his belief as to what he really could do. 
I remember a delightfully naif instance of this which occurred 
one day when I called upon him on my return from a visit to 
Haarlem. We were talking about the Frank Hals' collection 
there, and became enthusiastic on the subject. In the middle 
11 23 


of our conversation he suddenly turned round and pointed 
to a large, important picture of his own, saying, " I can fancy 
that, some day, people will talk of that picture as we are now 
talking of the Frank Hals." There was no sign of boasting 
or conceit in his tone; only quiet consideration and convic 
tion. Men of unusual capacity generally know their power 
perfectly well, but the majority of them are too Deserved to 
express this knowledge. On the other hand Millais was as 
open and frank as a boy, and would have thought it mere 
affectation to disguise such a belief from a friend." 

Towards the works of other artists, home or foreign, he 
was absolutely eclectic, finding in every School of Art some 
thing to admire. Talking on this subject with his friend 
Dr. Urquhart, of Perth, he said : " The best has been 
already done in Art, such as the sculpture of Greece, the 
portraits of Rembrandt, etc.; but artists are doing just as 
well to-day ; only their work has not the prestige of age, 
The newest Art texture may be very fine in both detail 
and conception, but the hard lines have yet to be worn off. 
Artists have to wrestle to-day with the horrible antagonism 
of modern dress; no wonder, therefore, that few recent 
portraits look really dignified. Just imagine Vandyck's 
1 Charles I.' in a pair of check trousers ! " 

Touching the value of Art from the economic standpoint, 
he continued: "Burton [keeper of the National Gallery] 
has been trying for twenty years to get hold of a Frank 
Hals; but the Dutch are quite right to hold their inherit 
ance. The artists have been a fund of wealth to Holland, 
as they bring so many tourists there. Paul Potter's * Bull,* 
however, is a very over-rated affair. Many men draw and 
paint domestic animals better than the old masters notably 
Henry Davis. A fine old Velasquez, with a hero on horse 
back, looking as if he would eat you up, is mounted on 
a poor horse, poorly drawn an impossible creature. A 
far higher standard in this respect is required now. None 
of the old masters can touch Meissonnier in this respect." 

Whistler he would have no man follow. " Clever a 
fellow as he is, I regard him as a great power for mischief 
amongst young men a man who has never learnt the 
grammar of his Art, whose drawing is as faulty as it can 
be. He thinks nothing of drawing a woman all out of 
proportion, with impossible legs, and arms proceeding from 
no one knows where. Any affectation of superiority in style 


has its effect on certain minds, and attracts a certain number 
of followers ; but when a spectator has to ask himself * Is 
this right ? ' he may be pretty sure it is wrong. Take 
Browning for instance most charming and unaffected of 
men his conversation was ever direct and clear; yet when 
he got a pen in his hand he was often quite unintelligible. 
I read his Cordille, and could make nothing of a very great 
deal of it; yet Browning's genius, as displayed in other 
works, is undoubted." 

In connection with this subject Mr. Briton Riviere kindly 
sends me the following note : " On looking through some 
of my short notes on Academy Exhibitions before they were 
opened to the public, I find the two following remarks by 
Millais, when we were engaged in hanging pictures: 

"'1882. ^Millais says "a clear edge" is what he has 
learnt by this exhibition. 5 

" 1890. Millais said to me, " All clear work tells here. 
The thing that does not tell is muddle. Clear, direct work 
is what always tells." ' 

" I do not think anyone has ever enjoyed good work 
done by his contemporaries more than he did. He said 
to me, 'The average quality of work is so much higher 
now than it used to be, that it is very difficult to surpass 
it ; but amid this high average of cleverness, I am looking 
for a man of the Fred Walker type to rise amongst the young 
ones and do something higher.' 

" Among the clever * Moderns,' even in pictures where 
his keen eye saw much to admire, he frequently deplored 
the superficiality of much of their work. A defective sense 
of beauty and lack of finish (in the true meaning of the 
word) were too often conspicuous. When anyone admired 
an eye or any part of a face in a picture still on his easel, 
he would say, ' Yes, I have caressed that,' meaning that 
he had worked upon it over and over again long after some- 
clever c Modern ' would have considered it finished. 

" I remember one day at the Academy, before the exhibi 
tion opened, he drew my attention to one of Leighton's 
pictures, saying, 'When I look round and see the work of 
some of these clever young men, I find no sense of beauty. 
Even their paint is not beautiful ! Now, look here (pointing 
to the Leighton) ; you may, or may not, agree with his 
method of painting, but it is all beautiful" With infinite 
pleasure he pointed out the drawing and surface of a vase in 


the picture, as diametrically opposed to the slovenly work of 
these * Moderns,' whose rendering of such things would have 
been simply ugly. 

" From what I have said about his remarks on some clever 
young c Moderns, 3 it must not be thought for one moment 
that he did not fully appreciate the younger school. Any 
thing that showed force and originality and sincerity, more 
especially when it came from a young or raw hand, was 
always received by him with delight. His mind was always 
open to new impressions in Art." 

To young men who thought of following Art as a pro 
fession even to such as displayed considerable aptitude and 
cleverness he rarely gave any encouragement, knowing as 
he did what thorns and briars beset the path of the artist, 
how many of even the most gifted men have gone down 
when almost within reach of the goal of their ambition, and 
how hopeless is the outlook for mere mediocrity in Art. 
" The public," he would say, " are too discriminative now. 
They want something more than merely good Art Only 
the very best of everything is in demand. The man who 
can draw a few lines in black-and-white better than anyone 
else is wanted ; the man who can paint a pretty good oil- 
painting is not. Strange to say, too, there is such a thing as 
fashion, even in Art, and its vagaries may at any time prove 
fatal to the man who has depended on Art for a living, how 
ever clever he may be." 

He himself was at one time almost driven to the point of 
despair, as upon occasion he confided to a lady writer the 
only lady who ever succeeded in " interviewing " him for he 
had a strong objection to the wily interviewer of the period, 
as Sir George Reid reminds me in an amusing note : " Your 
father, once speaking about interviewers, who seemed to have 
-been bothering him greatly with their questions, remarked, 
' These fellows want to know everything ; they want to know 
what you had for dinner, and if you say " chops," then they 
want to know what you did with the bones ! ' " 

The lady gives an interesting account of her interview 
in the Strand Magazine of July, 1896, from which I gather 
that, talking of the early days of his Art life, Millais said : 
"Prompt recognition! I never had any encouragement at 
all. All my early pictures were damned by the critics, and 
my parents were so discouraged, that my father said, over and 

By permission oftJie Earl of Rosebery 


over again, ' Give up painting, Jack, and take to something 
else.' I have had a happy life on the whole, but my youth 
was very unhappy. I had to work hard, illustrating and 
doing portraits and all sorts of inferior work, to help at 
home, ever since I was a lad ; and my early pictures received 
nothing but abuse. The critics \vere a greater power at 
that time than they are to-day; and however it may have 
been with other men, I had no consciousness of ultimate 
triumph then. I went on for years in a storm of dis 

As to the teaching of Art, the reader will find at the end 
of this chapter a contribution from Mrs. Perugini, in which 
his views are clearly expressed. The subject is also touched 
upon in an interesting and instructive article in the Daily 
News of December, 1884, from which I venture to borrow 
the following extracts : " ' Drawing and painting/ said 
Millais, c have their grammar, which can be taught and ac 
quired to a certain extent like the grammar of speech and 
music ; but beyond this there is little to be done for a painter 
everything by him.' He to whom all this was said 
allowed, apparently, a kindness for the French method of 
teaching to peep out 'You are evidently taken with the 
atelier system,' Millais goes on to say. ' Now, if I had a 
dozen young men painting in this studio of mine, the chances 
are that they would imitate my faults, as a certain French set 
do those of their master, who himself, however, imitates 
nobody. You would have a number of young men painting 
alike, and turning out work of the Millais pattern of a kind 
of average quality. Who are the influential men ? The 
very ones who have worked almost -alone. . . . You ask my 
opinion on Art education at this moment. It has never been 
so ample since the world began. Everything that has been 
done is to be seen in some form or other at the South 
Kensington Museum or in the National Gallery a splendid 
collection, especially for education and in the museums of 
the Continent. So much has been learned and done since 
these grand old masters lived and worked, that the educa 
tional course of Art has been greatly widened. It is the old 
story of the dwarf on the shoulders of the giant. The 
modern student sees farther and knows more because he has 
before him, not only the work of the ancients, but that of 
Raffaelle and Michael Angelo, of their predecessors and of 


their successors down to to-day. Access to all this is very 
easy just now. The collections of Holland and Belgium are 
just across the road, as it were, and it costs less trouble and 
less money to see the Dresden Gallery, and even the Uffizzi, 
or to study Tintoretto at Venice, or Velasquez and Murillo at 
Madrid and Seville, than it did fifty years ago to see the 
Louvre. Railways have helped students and young artists 
as they have helped others. . . . Raffaelle and Michael 
Angelo had comparatively little to study from compared with 
the modern student. All that previous work can teach him 
the latter can learn if he likes, and at the Academy we show 
him how to draw and paint So far as my experience goes, 
it is of little use telling a student how to paint The teacher 
must take the brush in hand and show him how it is done. 
Painting is, up to a certain point, so purely technical a thing 
that it must be learnt, like sewing or sawing, filing or turning, 
from actual instruction, and by great attention and practice. 
The manual dexterity can be acquired, like some knowledge 
of colour, composition, and so forth, but only up to a certain 
level, beyond which painting worthy of the name is too subtle 
a thing to be passed from hand to hand or from mind to 

" c I have read most of the best books on Art, and I do 
not see it explained. I quoted Walker just now, whose 
poetry seemed to be in his fingers only, and who, apparently, 
did exquisite work, as a violet has a sweet scent naturally. 
Some students acquire manual skill far more rapidly than 
others, but nearly all may become so far proficient in time as 
to copy, and sometimes fairly to imitate. But I need not tell 
you that painting of a high kind begins where all this leaves 
off. It is when the student has assimilated the knowledge of 
others, and has acquired the power of using his brush freely, 
that he has a chance of becoming a genuine painter. The 
strength to make this bound over the limits of teaching is 
not given to all, but it is this which marks the painter's work 
as original. Probably very few good painters could exactly 
define the moment of their emancipation, which is often 
slower than we might guess from their pictures. This 
process, however, has little to do with the actual technical 
teaching we are now giving our students at the Royal 
Academy. They have done wonderfully well at the competi 
tion this year (1884); many of their paintings show extra 
ordinary proficiency. The average of skill is, I know, 


immeasurably higher than it was thirty, or even twenty, 
years ago. Whether from this high average artists of great 
and original power will spring is more than we can tell. It 
seems reasonable to expect a great result, although we must 
not forget that Turner, like Walker, owed little to teaching.' 

" In answer to a query relative to the scarcity of figure 
pictures in such exhibitions as that of the Institute, he said: 
' We are living in an age of transition. The old order of 
things is giving place to what is newer, if not better. There 
seems to be a demand for truth, for actuality. The reason 
that historical and large genre pictures are now less painted 
than formerly is, that there is much less heart in the work. 
Probably the painter does not believe in it, nor the public 
either, so much as they once did. Would anybody now buy, 
much less paint, any of those friends of our childhood, " Alfred 
in the Neatherd's Hut," " Canute and his Courtiers," or " The 
Finding of the Body of Harold"? The painter might laugh 
at his own work.' .... 

uc There is still an interest in works of a devotional char 
acter; but the passionate, intensely realistic, and Dante-like 
faith and worship which inspired the old masters is extinct, 
or nearly so. It is the difficulty of giving agreeable reality 
to sacred subjects which daunts the modern artists, living in 
a critical age and sensitive to criticism. I should like very 
much to paint a large devotional picture, having for its 
subject " Suffer little children to come unto Me " ; I should 
feel the greatest delight in painting it; but the first question 
that occurs to me is, what children do we care about ? Why, 
our own fair English children, of course; not the brown, 
beady-eyed, sinuous-looking children of Syria. And with 
what sense of fitness could I paint the Saviour, bare-headed 
under the sun of Palestine, surrounded by dusky gipsy-like 
children; or, on the other hand, translate the whole scene to 
England? The public is too critical to bear this kind of 
thing now, and I should be weighed down by the sense of 
unreality in treating a divinely beautiful subject.'" 

"It is curious," says Mr. W. Armstrong, "that at the 
moment that Millais was saying these words to his inter 
viewer, a picture on the very lines he suggests only to con 
demn, was being made in a Munich studio. Frederick Uhde 
was painting the 'Laissez venir a Moi les petits enfants,' 
which created such a sensation at the last Salon, and was 
putting into it not the ' brown, beady-eyed, sinuous-looking 


children 1 of Palestine, but the flaxed-haired, heavy-limbed 
little maidens of Bavaria, and was setting them not against 
the blue skies and yellow plains of the East, but under a 
German cottage roof, among German fathers and mothers, 
and with every surrounding Teutonic, except the figure of 
Christ himself. . . . The world is much older than it was 
thirty or forty years ago. It not only knows more in reality, 
but is more knowing in its attitude. 

" To a suggestion that the world now cares little for the 
past facts of history, and wants such actuality as Dumas the 
younger, Sardou, and Ohnet give it, he [Millais] says: 'I 
cannot help thinking that a great deal of confusion arises 
from the use of the adjectives " historical " and " real." They 
have no scientific precision. Historical painting means 
different things, at different times, and in different months. 
Raffaelle and other great painters of his time illustrated 
sacred history by their work ; but in another sense the por 
traits of Titian, Velasquez, and Vandyck are historical pictures 
of the highest value. And Hogarth is a true historical 
painter, as well as a great satirist, for he has painted his time 
with marvellous strength and exactness. "Realism," again, 
is understood to signify all kinds of things by different people. 
One will understand it as a mere literal transcript of Nature, 
another the same thing after being distilled or smelted in the 
artists' mind. . . .' " 

As to Art Schools, Millais' love for the Royal Academy 
and its course of training, by which he himself had profited 
so much, could hardly fail to influence his choice. Speaking 
at the Academy banquet in 1895, ^ e sa ^ : 

" I entered the antique school as a probationer when I was 
eleven years of age, then became a student in the life school, 
and I have risen from stage to stage, until I reached the 
position I now hold of Royal Academician, so that, man and 
boy, I have been intimately connected with this Academy for 
more than half a century. I have received here a free educa 
tion as an artist an advantage any lad may enjoy who can 
pass a qualifying examination and I owe the Academy a 
debt of gratitude 1 can never repay. ... I love everything 
belonging to it the casts I have drawn from as a boy, the 
books I have consulted in our library, the very benches I 
have sat on, not forgetting my dear, good brother-members 
who surround me at this table." 


To "draw" him on the subject, It was only necessary to 
come and ask him, as so many Intending students did from 
time to time, what French artist's studio he would recom 
mend. He would say to us afterwards, u That young man 
will never get on ; he is the victim of fashion." And 

Commencement of second portrait 

then with a growl at the Little Englanders of Art "as 
if our own school was not good enough ! The Academy, 
the Slade, or young Cope would teach him to. paint just 
as well as any French master, if he's got any grit in 

Success in Art depends on the man himself, not on where 
he is taught; and, as to the curriculum of the schools, his 
views were precisely the same as Leighton's, whose address 


to the students at the distribution of prizes, in December, 
1879, drew forth the following letter : 

To Sir Frederick Leighton, Bart^ P.R.A. 

" DEAR LEIGHTON, I was suffering all yesterday with 
toothache, otherwise I would have attended the distribution 
last night. The ceremony is always most interesting to 
me, awakening as it does many anxious and happy recollec 
tions. My object in writing to you is to say I have read your 
address, which I think so beautiful, true, and useful that 
I cannot but obey an impulse of congratulating you upon 
it. For some time past I have been jotting down notes on 
Art, which some day may be put into form, and I find we 
are thinking precisely in the same way. Indeed, in what I 
have written I have used identically the same words as 
those you declaimed yesterday. The exponents of Art sur 
round it in such a cloud of mystery that it is a real gain when 
a practical authority is able to say something definite and 
clear the way. 

" Yours ever, 


These u Notes on Art" were unfortunately destroyed all 
save one short one in the following words : 


"At this moment, who are the masters most in fashion? 
Look at the prices realized at Christie's, and you will very 
soon arrive at the conclusion that they are our own portrait- 
painters of the last century Reynolds, Gainsborough, and 
Romney. They obtain higher prices than even the great 

"The charm, too, attaching to these works is very great, 
and it is easy to understand why they are so coveted. They 
are often beautiful as works of Art, and in their possession 
the happy owner daily lives in the best society. They give 
an air ^of distinction to the house. They decorate and 
harmonise with plate and furniture of the same period. 
The tout ensemble, is, perhaps, more socially agreeable than 
any other, whilst the portraits of Titian, Velasquez, and 
Vandyck are severer, and are therefore not. . . ." Cetera, 


Miss Edith Durham kindly sends me the following note 
on this subject: "I was a student in the Royal Academy 
schools from 1886-91, and was working in the ' Upper 
Life' when Sir John came round the painting schools for, 
I believe, the last time. . . . June or May, 1888. To us 
it was a great event, and I shall not easily forget the cheery 
good nature with which he looked at everyone's work. 
6 Draw, draw,' he said ; c never be afraid of an outline. 
Take a sable and some Indian red, and draw.' To someone 
who remarked that 'painting was very difficult,' he replied 
promptly, ' I should hope it is ! Where would I be if all 
you young fools could paint ? ' " 

His sentiments as an artist were fairly expressed by his 
old friend O'Neil, R. A., in some lines he sent to Millais, of 
which the last stanza runs thus : 

" With this advice I end. Let men obey 

Their mother, Nature safest, best of guides. 
Fortune is but the offspring of the day ; 

Enduring fame is won by steps, not strides 
She tells us when to sow and when to reap, 
When it is time to wake, and when to sleep." 

But his influence was by no means confined to the 
encouragement of good work in every branch of Art. That 
he was equally interested in the preservation of our Art 
treasures we have seen in his indignant protest against the 
neglect of our National Portrait Gallery, and his persistent 
worrying of the Government until its contents were safely 
housed in a building worthy of their reception. Most 
anxious, too, was he to add to the Art possessions of the 
country any exceptionally valuable works that might other 
wise fall into foreign hands ; and to this end he addressed 
himself on one occasion 

To Miss Gladstone. 


"July ith, 1884. 

" DEAR Miss GLADSTONE, I was so keen on my work 
this morning, and so anxious not to venture on a subject 
which might disturb your father, that I purposely refrained 
from speaking of the Blenheim pictures. Feeling, however, 
that time is of importance, I do not hesitate to write you 


a line to say that I earnestly hope he will see his way to 
grant for the National Gallery pictures not less than 
,160,000. With that sum at the disposal of the trustees, 
I have good reason to hope that three of the chief pictures 
the Raphael, Rubens' family picture, and Vandyck's 
'Charles the First* may be obtained for the country. The 
Rubens portrait of himself, Helena Forman, and child, 
is regarded by Dr. Waagen, in his Galleries and Cabinets of 
Art, as quite one of the finest works of the master ; and 
Mr. C. Wertheimer, who is the best living authority on the 
value of old masters, tells me he can find a purchaser who 
will give ^"50,000 for it at once. Large as the sum ; 160,000 
undoubtedly is, I don't think Mr. Gladstone will regret the 
outlay, and I for one would rejoice to think that his name 
will be for ever associated with so splendid an acquisition 
as is now within our reach. 

" I am induced to write this because I feel sure no satis 
factory purchase can be made with ,100,000 only. 
" Believe me, yours sincerely, 

" J. E. MILLAIS." 

Happily his letter met with success. The amount he 
asked for was granted, and these famous paintings were 
rescued from the fate of so many priceless works that had 
recently been allowed to escape into other lands. False and 
foolish economy he considered the refusal to secure them, 
when other and poorer nations were glad to take them at 
the prices asked; but what he lamented far more sorely 
was the penny-wise and pound-foolish policy of giving 
enormous sums for the pictures of deceased artists that 
might have been bought for a fourth or a fifth of the amount 
during the lifetime of the painter. This, he insisted, was 
not only a gross waste of public money and cruelly dis 
couraging to the great artists of the day, but reflected 
seriously on the intelligence of the governing body, as 
implying an incapacity on their part to estimate the value of 
a picture until all the world had pronounced upon its merits. 

Chantrey, the sculptor, would have been a still happier 
man than he was, when making his bequest to the Royal 
Academy, had he known what a new era this generous gift 
of his opened up; for now the distribution of the annual 
allowance for pictures is entrusted to the Academy authori 
ties, and that they know a good picture when they see it is 



clear enough from the use they have made of the money. 
Few, indeed, could find fault with their selection in any year 
since this duty was imposed upon them, for all the pictures 
they have bought are undeniably of the highest rank in Art. 
The only difficulty was to find a place where they could be 
well seen and enjoyed by the public. 

And now, while pressed with this consideration, came Sir 
Henry Tate's princely offer to present to the nation his 
priceless collection of modern pictures, and a fine gallery in 
which to house them. Strange to say, this offer was met in 
no generous spirit. All sorts of difficulties were put in his 
way, and the would-be donor was even subjected to personal 
insults that would have driven from his purpose any man less 
thoroughly and heartily patriotic. Englishmen who fly to 
the galleries of Paris, Madrid, Dresden, or Antwerp, to instil 
in their children a love for Art, can hardly be proud to think 
that amongst their own countrymen should exist a body of 
educated men who would fail to appreciate the most dis 
interested gift to the nation which this century has seen. 
Millais was indignant beyond measure at the spirit they 
exhibited. " It was here in my dining-room," he exclaimed, 
" that Mr. Tate, Leighton, and Lord Carlisle met, and we 
talked it over and settled it as far as we could. You see the 
utter hopelessness of establishing anything, even for the 
good of the nation, when there are insolent disturbers 

The insolent disturbers prevailed for a while, but eventu 
ally, owing to the exertions of Sir William Harcourt, Mr. 
Tate was offered the fine site which his gallery now occupies 
at Millbank. When Millais was in Scotland Sir Henry Tate 
wrote asking his opinion of this site, and received the follow 
ing characteristic reply : 

To Sir Henry Tate, Bart. 

" November 2 Qth, 1892. 

^ " DEAR TATE, I would accept, without a moment's hesita 
tion, the land offered for your gallery. The situation is 
splendid and open, with that grand old river in front. Noth 
ing in Kensington would be as good. 

" There will be grumblers, whatever you decide on. Don't 
ii 24 


listen to them. I am proud to think that my dear old friend, 
Sir William Harcourt, is the man who will have done this 
great service to the national Art. 

" With kind regards, 

" Ever yours sincerely, 


At last the gallery was built a gallery devoted to modern 
Art such as may fairly challenge comparison with the works of 
the old masters but unhappily Millais did not live long 
enough to witness its completion. In a letter to me Sir 
Henry Tate says : "I may say he took great interest in the 
gallery, and even asked for photographs of the building, on 
which he wrote, about a fortnight before his death, ' Quite 
satisfied. ]. E. M.'" 

Now for a word or two as to the critics. That Millais was 
not very anxious to cultivate their good graces may be 
gathered from a letter of his 

To Mrs. Jopling. 

" April zznd, 1884. 

"DEAR MRS. JOPLING, I am afraid I failed to answer 
your letter requesting the admission of an Art critic to see 
my pictures. I have only just found it among a heap of 
unanswereds. ... I am afraid I have incurred the dis 
pleasure of at least a dozen Art critics who have solicited 
the same opportunity, but it is really impossible to grant all 
the applications I receive, and I must take the consequence. 
There is a day set apart at the Royal Academy especially for 
their convenience. . . . Yours sincerely, 


It can hardly, indeed, be supposed that he had any special 
liking for a body of men so many of whom did their best to 
crush him at the most critical period of his life. Nor did he 
think any the more highly of them when, foiled in their 
effort, they turned round and covered him with effusive 
praise. He had learnt by this time to estimate at its worth 
the criticism of men who so abused their office under shelter 
of the editorial "we," and was neither elated nor depressed 
by anything they said. 

His victory over these pseudo-critics was far wider-reaching 


37 1 

in its results than at first appeared. Public confidence in the 
Art criticism of the day received a severe shock, and could 
only be restored by the introduction of new and more healthy 
elements. It must be lifted on to a higher and more in 
tellectual plane ; and, in response to the public demand, this 
was done. Men of wider views and higher culture were 
pressed into the service, and though it is true that real Art 
critics are born, not made and few indeed are they who can 
boast this excellent gift outside the body of artists them 
selves the best Art criticism of to-day leaves little to be 
desired in point of tone and discriminative power. In every 
case there is at least an intelligent effort, perhaps even a 
feverish desire, to understand the object and aspiration of 
the painter whose work is under review, instead of the old 
formula in dealing with an unknown artist, which seemed 
rather to be, " Here is a new man, whose aim and methods I 
do not understand. He therefore must be wrong. Come, 
let us damn him." 

To Mr. F. G. Stephens belongs the honour of having first 
discovered and interpreted to the world the meaning and 
merits of Millais' works, and of having manfully stuck to his 
opinions from first to last, in spite of all opposition.* Mr. 
Spielmann, too, has of late years made a special study of 
these works, and his views as recorded in the Press are, 
almost without exception, not only broad-minded, but correct. 

Of other Art critics, with one or two exceptions, enough 
perhaps to say that they belong for the most part to the rank 
of Press-men, and however clever in their own vocation, they 
can hardly be accepted as trustworthy guides in the realm of 
Art. Mr. Frith, in his Reminiscences, expresses himself 
strongly on this point, objecting to all criticism of Art by 
Press-men. " Why," he asks, " should literary men criticise 
painting? Artists do not criticise their work. They are 

judged by their compeers I would here advise all 

artists, young and old, never to read Art criticism. Nothing 
is to be learnt from it. Let me ask any painter if, when he 
wants advice upon any difficulty in the conduct of his work, 
he would seek it from an Art critic? No, I reply for him ; 
he would apply to an artist friend." 

Millais was never on terms of intimacy with any of the 

* W. M. Rossetti also fought hard for the Pre-Raphaelites, whenever he could 
obtain a hearing. 


critics. When they called, he received them, of course, with 
tfye civility that as gentlemen they had a right to expect, but 
nothing more. To go beyond this would have been to belie 
his own nature, which would never permit him to affect a 
greater cordiality than he felt ; otherwise he might perhaps 
have met with better treatment at the hands of some of the 
craft. The suggestion may seem uncharitable. Would that 
it were so ; but, knowing what I do, I cannot withdraw it. 
Only a year or two before my father's death a critic in the 
employment of one of the leading London papers and a bit 
of a picture-dealer as well (to say more would expose his 
identity, as I have no desire to do) called one day at Palace 
Gate to inquire about a valuable old picture that he was bent 
on getting hold of. Millais told him it was not for sale that 
he meant to keep it himself but, in nowise daunted by the 
refusal, the critic called again and again about it, until at last, 
annoyed by his persistence, Millais peremptorily refused to 
discuss the matter any further. 

The Academy Exhibition now came on, and Millais' con 
tributions were all but universally acknowledged as amongst 
his finest works. There was, however, one striking exception 
to the general sentiment. In the paper with which this critic 
was connected appeared a notice of his exhibits so utterly 
ridiculous and so virulent in tone as to leave no room for 
doubt as to the motive of the writer. He had been baulked 
of his prey and repulsed in a way he did not quite like ; and 
this was his revenge ! My father never spoke to him after 

In contrast with this unpleasant episode comes the follow 
ing letter from Mrs. Perugini, already known to my readers 
as one of Millais' most intimate friends. The letter is 
addressed to myself. 

From Mrs. Perugini. 



"July ist, 1898. 

" DEAR JOHNNIE, When you asked me to write down for 
you my impressions of your father, and a few of the things I 
recollected about him, I readily consented to do so, for in 
deed nothing seemed easier at the moment than to describe 
one whom I had so much reason to love and remember. It 
did not occur to me that it is perhaps more difficult to speak of 


& :4'*, *W# ^-: " -".^ > ' .-i 4^H<:' 
$::vr. 4 H''^ ;:',;,;(%>'' 



those we have known very well, than of mere acquaintances. 
When we have loved people, their very faults become dear 
to us, and unless we are very strong-minded indeed, we can 
seldom look upon their work or themselves with entirely 
unprejudiced eyes. Happily the largeness and straight 
forward simplicity of your father's character, and the lovable 
quality of his faults would make it difficult for even the most 
captious critic to find anything that was blamable in him ; 
whilst the work he leaves behind him speaks in so distinct 
and unmistakable a language, that there is no necessity for 
anyone to interpret or describe it or attribute to it any mean 
ing other than its creator intended it to have. Your father 
was a master of the art of making himself understood ; he 
knew so perfectly what he had to say, and said it in so strong 
and simple and unaffected a fashion. His character is as 
plainly indicated on his canvases, I think, as though he had 
used a pen, and not a brush, to impress his individuality 
upon the world, and it is something beyond his craft as a 
workman and his genius as a painter which will always make 
' a Millais ' so interesting a study, not only to the lover of Art, 
but to the lover of all that is most real and sincere in human 

" Many years after I had sat for the girl in ' The Black 
Brunswicker' your father very kindly offered to paint my 
portrait, which was to be a present from himself to my 
husband. When I went to him for the first sitting, being 
anxious to save him trouble, I had put on a plain black dress, 
and placed myself in an easy attitude with my back to him 
and my profile . turned towards him. ' That 's capital/ he 
said, c I am going to paint you just like that; don't stir.' I 
didn't stir, and at the end of two hours, when he told me 
I might have a rest, I found I could scarcely hobble across 
the room, so stiff had my easy attitude made me. It was 
during one of these intervals, I remember, and when we 
were talking what he called 'shop,' that I once asked him, 
which did he consider was the best sort of training for an 
Art student ? He took me to the window and, drawing aside 
the blind, he said : * Look, my dear ; I would place him in 
this chair here, and I would give him a pencil and a sheet of 
paper, and I would make him draw all that he sees passing 
in the street below that hansom cab loitering along ; the 
little girl bowling her hoop, with her sister and the governess 
following her slowly; the policeman at the corner, and the 


cart of flowers and vegetables over there by the roadside. 
Then I would bid him look up into the sky, and try what he 
could make of those white clouds hurrying so quickly across 
the blue. If, after a short or a long time, he could draw 
some of these things accurately, or in such a way as to 
convey exactly the meaning of what he saw to the spectator 
in fact, my dear, if he had an eye to see with, and a brain 
to understand he would be an artist, and not all the teaching 
of all the masters in the world could do much more for him ! ' 

" I ventured to say that every Art student might not 
possess his gift of observation, in which case * In which 
case, my dear, a man had better not be an artist at all/ he 
said. c Let him deal in pictures instead of painting them ; 
it is a much more remunerative occupation.' But in spite 
of this sweeping condemnation of the less observant artist, 
your father was always kind to all young students who went 
to him for advice or help, and an encouraging word w r as 
never wanting from him when he saw a ray of hope or 
promise in any work, however crude it might be. I think 
your father greatly modified his views on the subject of Art 
training in later years; but at the time I am speaking of, 
he was strongly opposed to the teaching of Art as it was 
then taught in the schools, and was veiy greatly in favour 
of a man's teaching himself, through the medium of his own 
observation and temperament. 

" Your father was so frequent a visitor at our house, and 
my husband and I looked upon him so much as one of 
ourselves, that he came and went in many moods and at all 
times and seasons. One day he would be in the gayest 
spirits, delighted with any small joke and pleased with every 
thing. On the next perhaps he would appear quite depressed 
and silent, anxious only for a game of bezique or a chess 
problem to solve, in order to pass away a little of the time 
which must elapse before he would be able to return to the 
work that was absorbing him. During the latter part of his 
life he was just as ardent a worker as I remember him to 
have been in the days of ' The Black Brunswicker ' indeed 
I never saw any painter work with quite such enthusiasm as 
your father. His vitality and energy were as remarkable at 
the end of a long day of labour as at the beginning. If 
his morning's work had been unsuccessful, as sometimes 
happened, he would still do as he did so many years ago 
wipe out everything, with a kind of eager impatience to 


erase from his canvas what so displeased his eye telling 
you at the same time how good he was going to make it next 
time. If he had satisfied himself, he was just as nervously 
anxious to go on with what he had begun as he used to be 
in the old days. His eagerness and restless industry were 
quite contagious, and no one who ever sat to him would 
have thought of hinting even that the sitting had been a 
long one, or that his model felt a little tired. When his 
work was finished, that is to say when he suddenly found 
that he could do no more for the day, he would hastily put 
aside his brushes, dismiss his model abruptly, and turn to 
the next best thing to be done ; perhaps a pipe, or a walk 
in Kensington Gardens. From the time I first knew him 
until the end he was always the same busy, active, eager 
being gifted with a great genius, a charming personality, 
and a goodness and kindness of heart that brought sunshine 
to any home he entered. 

" Your father had one little weakness, about which we 
often used to tease him. He liked always to be right. 
Now we most of us do like to be right, and I think very 
few of us are often so near being right as your father; how 
ever, he was not infallible, and one day he was wrong. He 
happened to be walking up Piccadilly one afternoon in the 
company of a friend, smoking his pipe, and in one of his 
most genial moods. Coming towards them was a gentle 
man of a very stiff and formal demeanour. Your father 
immediately went up to this gentleman, and said in the most 
cordial manner possible, ' Glad to see you. Your name 's 
Brown.' ' My name is not Brown/ said the gentleman 
severely. ' Ah, I thought not,' said your father, and re 
sumed his walk and his conversation as though nothing had 
happened. At the corner of Bond Street he turned to his 
friend with that merry look in his eyes we all remember, and 
said, ' I suppose I put my foot in it that time, eh, old boy? 
But he was very like Brown, and I believe he was Brown ! ' 

" I fear that in speaking of him I have alluded too fre 
quently to myself, but you must forgive me; he was so 
intimately connected with all the joys and sorrows of my 
life that I can hardly dissociate myself from him, and when 
I think of him I remember also the long years now far 
away when his friendship was my constant pleasure, and at 
times my greatest comfort. Yours, 




I FIRST made the acquaintance of John Millais at my 
father's house about the year 1854. Tall, thin, and 
active, his eager, handsome face, his clustering curls of 
dark hair, and his keen, bright eye his whole presence 
betokened a boyish energy which was quite remarkable. 
I was but a lad then, and he was already a man who had 
made his mark, but his youth and vivacity almost bounce 
strongly impressed me. Some few years after I myself 
began studying painting, and in 1858 I renewed my ac 
quaintance with him an acquaintance which, I am proud 
to say, quickly developed into an intimacy which lasted 
unbroken to his death. Through all the years I knew 
him he did not seem to change in disposition. The same 
boyish heartiness which characterised him in 1854 remained 
with him till 1895, when the hand of death gripped him 
by the throat Age did not dull his powers of enjoyment, 
nor did success render him blase. He remained a boy till 
the last A day's sport, a game of cards or billiards 
(though latterly he ceased to play billiards) any trifle where 
skill or pluck were concerned he entered thoroughly into 
the spirit of the thing. I recollect his watching from my 
window two little chickens squaring up to each other. No 
boy could have laughed more heartily than he at the plucky 
little creatures, and he would not leave the window till one 
had yielded. On a memorable occasion I took him and 
Leighton to Henley Regatta. Millais was quite delightful 
His admiration of the rowing, of the scene on the river, 
and above all of the many pretty girls to be found at 
Henley, was proclaimed aloud with a bubbling, boyish good 
humour which could give no offence. Nobody appreciated 
him more than Leighton, who, though he too enjoyed the 
beauty of the scene, had no taste for sport beyond that 




which he thought it his duty as an Englishman to affect. 
Himself a solitary, self-contained man, he wondered at 
Millais' vivacity. " How I envy Millais his wonderful spirits 
and power of enjoyment," he said to me afterwards. 

In the fifties no one could be less like the then received 
type of an artist than Millais. His clean-shaven lip and 
chin, and his whiskers worn in the fashion of the day 
("mutton-chop "), contrasted with the beards worn by most 
artists, while in place of the flowing necktie, open collar, 
and velveteen coat of the many painters, Millais always 
appeared in a long frock-coat and high-standing " stick-up." 
In fact he looked like a successful and fashionable business 

Rossetti told me, and Millais himself confirmed this story, 
that he (Millais) went one day to Donovan, who 
then had a great reputation as a phrenologist, to have his 
character recorded. Donovan was a shrewd man, and had 
many little dodges to discover the profession and tendencies 
of the people who came to consult him. All round his 
room, on shelves, he placed busts of eminent men of every 
profession, and by playfully calling attention to these, he 
often learnt what he wished to know of his clients. But 
Millais utterly foiled him. In vain Donovan pointed to 
his busts. "That's a fine head," he observed, pointing to 
a bust of Maclise. " Who is the old cock ? " asked Millais. 
He knew none of them neither Beethoven, Michael Angelo, 
nor Newton. When the character was delivered it recorded 
that the client was a shrewd man of business, with a great 
taste for mathematics, but was utterly deficient in imagina 
tion, would never make an artist, and probably could not 
tell pink from green. " Do you know who I am ? " roared 
Millais, shaking the paper in Donovan's face. " I 'm Millais." 
Donovan tried to get the paper back, but the indignant 
Millais carried it away. 

How well I remember his visits to my studio in those early 
days ! He would take a chair before the picture and stop me 
in the midst of the explanation I, as a nervous young artist, 
wished to make. " Wait ! I see all that, " he would cry. 
Then he would say some kind things, and then proceed to 
criticise. Millais' criticism was always to the point. He 
never reasoned about sentiment, nor did he trouble much 
about composition; he pointed out faults of drawing and 
proportion, and he always finished by saying, " Have you 


got a bit of chalk?" If you produced your chalk he was 
terrible, going all over your picture. "That's too small. 
" Your ear is in the wrong place; it ought to be there (chalk). 
It 's extraordinary how seldom fellows get the position of the 
ear correctly. Bring that out so (chalk). Drapery always 
sticks out so in Nature. Do this and that " and he did it 
in chalk. I confess I never had fear of Millais and his chalk, 
but I have known sensitive painters tremble before him. 
Latterly, I own, I kept the chalk away and presented him 
my palette and brushes, with which he was less reckless. 
Many a good hint I have thus received, for he was in his 
way an admirable critic, and really took pains with those 
pictures he liked. After a time he would cry, " There, that 
will do, we Ve had enough of pictures ; let 's talk of some 
thing else." Rossetti used to say that Millais did n't like his 
own pictures, and hated everyone else's. This might have 
been true of him when he was quite young, for young men 
are often intolerant, but certainly not in late years. I have 
always found him most lenient. " I know, my dear boy, how 
difficult it is to do good work indeed, anything; I myself 
am so discouraged about my painting that I sometimes go to 
my wife and have a good cry." This was the man accused 
of carelessness! 

Although Millais was so wholesale a critic, no one was 
more tolerant of criticism from a brother artist. " You come 
with a fresh eye," he would observe apologetically. He was 
easily convinced, and generally then and there proceeded to 
make suggested alterations. Very few of his own pictures 
pleased him, but when he had done a good thing he exulted 
in his triumph and would proclaim it loudly. When the 
Leyland gallery was exhibited at " Christie's," previous to the 
sale Millais went down and openly asserted that the " Eve 
of St. Agnes" was the best picture there. He was probably 
right. In anyone else the self-praise would have been 
offensive, but in Millais somehow it was so simple and boyish 
as to be delightful, Corot, the French landscape painter, 
had somewhat of the same joyous disposition. I remember 
once mentioning one of his pictures to him. " Oh ! c'est un 
fameux? he cried, and he clacked his tongue to emphasise 
what he said, much as Millais would have done had he been 
a Frenchman. 

It is not to be denied that at one time of his life Millais 
was thought by many to be very egotistical ; but this arose 


principally from his strong personality. He felt his strength. 
He was Millais, and the same intensity that enabled him to 
achieve his great works seemed to crystallise around his 
person. He himself was his own work. He had made his 
own way, and as he gloried in his pictures so he gloried in 
his success. But to his friends even his weakness had a 
charm. His faults were so transparent, his virtues so real, 
that we could not separate one from the other, and we loved 
him for both. A great heart lay concealed beneath the rough 
exterior. We could rely on him, for he was without envy or 
jealousy. Never was he insincere ; never have I heard him 
make an unkind or disparaging remark of a contemporary, 
even of those held up as examples to him by foolish critics/ 

If Millais was egotistical it was due to his bringing up. 
From his .earliest years his father was his humble servant 
used to run his errands and fetch his colours ; and the rest of 
the family were early aware that John was the bread-winner 
of the household. And when success came it never ceased. 

One day, just after he was elected President, he met a con 
frere of the Royal Academy, Philip Calderon (now, alas ! 
also dead) in Kensington Gardens. His fatal disease had 
not been declared by his physician, though it was suspected 
by his friends, and I feel convinced he himself realised the 
truth. " It will kill me," he said in a hoarse whisper, point 
ing to his throat. " But," he added, " I am ready and not 
afraid ; I Ve had a good time, my boy, a very good time ! " 
And so he had. No one has been the acknowledged head of 
his profession longer than he; no one had enjoyed greater 
success, and (let me add) no one was more admired and loved 
by his brother artists. 

Of all the men it has been my lot to know during my life 
I think Millais was the one with the most natural ability. It 
was a pity these natural powers were not more cultivated in 
early life. I do not find that he was ever at school after the 
age of ten, when he entered the Royal Academy. Had the 
education of most of us been arrested at so early an age, I 
fear our intellectual development would have been strangely 
stinted. It is wonderful that Millais should have been able 
to keep level with the requirements of the men among whom 
he loved to live, furnished with so slight a stock of school 
knowledge. It only proves his wonderfully quick powers of 
mind. From the time he plunged into painting at the age of 
ten he devoted himself to his Art alone. This was no doubt 


a gain for him in mere manual dexterity in his profession, but 
he could and would have done more, without giving up one 
jot of his pictorial dexterity, with his bright natural percep 
tions, had his mind been framed by more schooling. Soon 
after he had joined the Pre-Raphaelites, the Brethren pub 
lished a literary journal entitled the Germ (which these young 
men chose to pronounce with a hard G.) Seeing Rossetti 
occupied with the poetry which afterwards appeared in the 
Germ, Millais said one day, " I could write poetry if I 
wished," and he took a slate and straightway proceeded to 
write an epic! He filled the two sides of the slate with the 
delicate and minute handwriting which was always his, and 
then read it out. " And devilish good it was," said Rossetti 
to me, " but having read the slatef ul, he rubbed out the first 
side and continued the poem." Of course it was never 
finished, nor was what he had written preserved. 

As a speaker Millais was wonderful. It is true he rarely 
spoke of anything but himself; but how dramatic and excel 
lent it was ! I call to mind one evening at a dinner at the 
Art Club, at which Leighton, the then newly-elected President 
of the Royal Academy, was the guest of the evening, 
Millais had to -return thanks for the Art of Painting. It 
was the first time I heard him speak in public. The inten 
sity of the man was quite remarkable. In a deep voice and 
slowly his words poured forth. u When I was a young man," 
he said, " William Makepeace Thackeray, having seen my 
pictures, came to call on me. And very proud I was, I 
can tell you, to make his acquaintance. And greatly did 
his sympathy cheer me at a time when most of the world 
was against me ! Some years after, when things were going 
better with me, I met Thackeray at the Garrick Club, and 
he said to me, * I have just come from Rome, where I have 
seen the cleverest young dog I ever met. Mark my words/ 
he added, clapping me on the shoulder, 'that young man 
will be President of the Royal Academy.' I own I thought 
these remarks in bad taste, and was not at all pleased ; for 
at that time I was full of youthful ambition, and naturally 
thought that I myself ought to be President. Years have 
passed since then, and I have made the acquaintance of 
Frederick Leighton. And now I fancy I see old Thackeray 
before me, and his eyes twinkle behind his spectacles as 
he seems to say to me, 'Millais, my boy, I told you so!" 
I bow before my President and acknowledge the truth of 


By permission of Thomas McLean and Son 


that great man's judgment." The words, as my memory has 
retained them cannot convey the impression they made on 
those present, owing to the intensity of Millais' earnestness. 

When he was leaving the club that evening, one of the 
members said to him, " That was a beautiful speech, Millais ! 
Was it impromptu ?" "Impromptu?" shouted Millais, with 
characteristic warmth. " Why, it took me three weeks to 
make it!" 

On other occasions I have heard him speak, and always 
of himself and his experiences, and always in a way to excite 
the enthusiasm of his hearers. It has fallen to my lot 
to hear many celebrated orators, but I think Millais 
was by far the most impressive. His speech when he 
took the chair at the banquet of the Royal Academy, in 
the absence through ill-health of poor Leighton, who can 
forget who was present? His voice had lost all its old 
roar. It was husky through his terrible malady, but the 
audience (and a very difficult audience it is) were so still you 
might have heard a whisper. " I love it so," he said, allud 
ing to the Academy, with which he had been associated so 
many years. " I love it all, from the very benches I sat on 
as a boy ! " 

I am unaware of any writing that Millais published with 
the exception of a short article in the Magazine of Art, 
which he called " Thoughts on our Art of to-day." This 
article was quite characteristic of the man. He called it 
"Thoughts on our Art," but it was entirely of his own Art 
that he wrote. He was moved to write by the undue pro 
minence given by critics of late years to some painters of 
the last century. He felt that in praising the past unduly 
the present was too much neglected. He need have 
laboured under no apprehension on the matter. Fashion 
may place Romney and Morland on a pedestal to which 
they are not entitled, but time will assuredly return them 
to their proper place ; and though age no doubt adds a 
charm to the work of the painter, fashion has more to do 
with the modern craze. Could it be possible that Millais, 
when he wrote this article, was losing that belief in himself 
which had been his characteristic through life? I think not. 
He was only actuated by a wish to do good to the members 
of his profession who had not enjoyed his success and were 
not, moreover, supported by his robust confidence in his own 



Millais was a charming companion and a most picturesque 
conversationalist. His wit was playful and boyish, and when 
he described anything the description had all the brilliant 
rendering we find in his pictures. I call to mind an occasion 
when I met him at dinner at a house opposite Hyde Park, 
whose owner is now no more. Browning was of the party. 
Talking of "Stubbs' London," lately published by the 
Shakespeare Society, Browning quoted one of the curiosi 
ties of the book. " In Lambeth there is a ducking-stool, 
where ' Queans ' were placed and thrice ducked in the 
Thames." " And," cried Millais, whose wife was away in 
the South of France, " a very good way of taking the waters. 

Don't you think so, L ?" turning to one of the guests, 

whose wife was also away. " Yes," 'said the latter, "and 
cheaper ! " 

When Cardinal Newman came to sit to him, I fear he 
rather shocked the priests who came with him, when he said 
gaily, pointing to his sitters' chair, " Come, jump up, you dear 
old boy!"* He took a boyish delight in everything that 
belonged to him, in his pictures, in his family, in his house, 
and above all in himself. Nor was he the least discomforted 
by things that were said to him which might have ruffled the 
temper of one less confident. 

During his visit to Italy I think in the year 1864 
Millais acquired a statue, which he fully believed to be by 
Michael Angelo. For a long time he was full of his statue. 
" Come and see my statue " was the first thing he said on 
meeting a friend. " Phillip," he said, " have you seen my 
statue ? " " No," said John Phillip, " I have not ; but I hear 
it is by God Almighty himself! " Woolner, w r ho never would 
acknowledge any sculpture but his own, said on seeing it, 
"It is undoubtedly by Michael Angelo; but,"' he added 
with a snarl, " it } s a devilish bad thing." I do not think it 
is by the great man to whom Millais attributed it; but it 
certainly is not a bad thing. One leg and foot might have 
been touched by Michael Angelo; the rest is the work of 
some inferior man. Someone one day pointed out to Millais 
that one leg was too short. " Oh ! " cried Millais, " every 
painter has a short leg even to his best picture." 

Through Millais' artistic life which was longer than that 

* Millais' actual words were, " Oh, your eminence, on that eminence, if you 
please," pointing to the models' dais; and, seeing him hesitating, he said, " Come, 
jump up, you dear old boy ! " J. G. M. 

By permission of Tlumtas McLean and Son 


given to most artists, from his having begun painting at 
so early an age the joys of painting itself formed his 
principal pleasure. The beauty of Nature was a constant 
delight to him. He loved to watch the children playing 
in Kensington Gardens, and the Long Walk nearly opposite 
his house was a sure place to find him on summer afternoons. 
" They are the most beautiful things in this world," he 
said to me one day as we sat and watched. " What subjects 


to paint!" When he had what is called a good subject 
he was enthusiastic. I remember his loudly-expressed de 
light with his model when he was painting " The Beef Eater." 
When " The North- West Passage " was on the easel he 
could talk of nothing but of Trelawny, the friend of Byron 
and Shelley, and the author of The Adventures of a Younger 
Son, who sat for the principal figure. He told me a very 
characteristic story of this celebrated man who was, I 
believe, called the " Pirate " by his friends. One day 
Trelawny was riding with Byron, when the poet suddenly 


asked him what he thought was the ruling passion of man-, 
kind. " I," said Trelawny, " being an enthusiastic young 
man, said, love." " No," cried Byron, laying his hand on my 
horse's mane, " not love, Trelawny malignity ! " 

It so happened a friend of mine was dining with an old 
friend of Trelawny's in the " Albany " just as this picture 
was being finished. They were astonished to hear a loud 
knocking at the door, and Trelawny's great voice asking 
for admission. On his entering the room the old man, in 
a furious voice, cried, " I want you to be my second. That 
fellow Millais has insulted me, and I '11 have his blood." 
With great difficulty they found out the cause of offence. 
Trelawny was a strict teetotaler, and " That fellow Millais 
has handed me down to posterity with a glass of rum-and- 
water in one hand and a lemon in the other." This is 
not quite true ; but it is an undoubted fact that the rum-and- 
water is there (and how admirably painted !). For some 
time Trelawny could not be appeased, but finally departed 
grumbling, "After all, I don't think it is Millais' fault. It 's 
his wife's. She's a Scotchwoman, and the Scotch are a 
nation of sots." So his anger ended in an aphorism, and 
he was content. 

As Nature had been singularly lavish in her gifts to 
Millais, she added to his intellectual qualities a remarkable 
personal comeliness. In early life he was singularly hand 
some. Tall and graceful, he excelled in all sports in which 
activity and address are necessary. In his boyish way he 
was proud of his looks. " No -painter," he said to me many 
years ago, "can draw who is not well proportioned. A man 
always reproduces himself." * 

As he grew older he did not lose his beauty. In later 
life, though his figure had somewhat changed, though age 
had added weight and destroyed elasticity, he still carried 
himself without stooping. With his grey hair and whiskers, 
keen look, and singularly erect carriage of his head, he 
looked like an old lion, and he resembled the royal beast 
in his roar. During his last illness, when he was lying 
speechless in his bed, and his grey beard had already grown, 

* Sir George Reid writes : "On one of the days while he was with us here 
in 1894, an Art student called. As he was leaving, knowing the pleasure it would 
give him in after-life to say he had once shaken hands with Millais, I asked your 
father if I might introduce him. He received him, and talked with him in the 
kindest way; but after he was gone exclaimed, 'Oh! don't make him an artist, 
he's too ugly!' The poor lad certainly was rather plain." 



I never saw a more beautiful head. The touching affection 
with which in mute demonstration he greeted his old friends 
was enough to unman the firmest nerves, and I confess, 
though 1^ had hoped by cheerful talk to enliven the sick-room, 
I was quite overcome, and could say nothing ; nor was I the 
only one touched. The eminent surgeon who performed 
the operation which prolonged his life told me that when 
the operation was successfully completed Millais insisted 
on embracing him. " I," he said, " am from the necessity 
of my profession quite without emotion ; but I confess I was 
quite overcome." 

To the last Millais continued the emotional boy. And 
we, who knew and loved him, loved most this straight 
forward simplicity and heartiness, which was no humbug 
this joyousness of the schoolboy which is seldom to be found 
when the world has knocked off the freshness of youth. 
Till the last illness his life was a delight to him. He had 
had a good time. " I have no enemies," he once said to 
me ; " there s s no man with whom I would not shake hands 
except one, and, by Jove! I should like to shake him 
by the hand now." 

To talk of Millais one must need to talk of his pictures, 
for they were Millais himself. The value of contemporary 
criticism is very doubtful, yet the opinion of the whole of 
the profession should have some weight, and about the 
exhibition now just closed at the Royal Academy there were 
no two opinions among painters. . . . The man was a trans 
cendent painter, of that there can be no doubt ; even critics 
admit so much. But they assert that when he changed his 
style he lost all powers of imagination ; that he was, moreover, 
careless, slovenly, without beauty. I call to mind meeting 
him in 1859, when he brought his pictures up from Scotland 
to the exhibition. I asked permission to see them. " Come 
by all means," said Millais, " but you fellows won't like them." 
I may explain that I was then a Pre-Raphaelite. I went 
to Langham Chambers, where they were on view, and 
found "The Vale of Rest" and "Apple Blossoms." His 
style had completely changed; nevertheless I did like the 
pictures in spite of the change, nor do I find any lack of 
imagination in them or in the subsequent work. 

Millais from the first sought out the poetry of Nature. 
He began to study it in its infinite variety of detail, and 
he rendered it, owing to the matchless delicacy of his hand, 


in a way which for minuteness and truth has never been 
equalled. As he acquired more experience his treatment 
became broader. Still leaning on Nature, all his master 
pieces were reminiscences impressions according to the 
modern term of Nature itself. But in rendering Nature 
Millais was a true poet. It has been said that imagination 
is only a form of memory. The book of Nature was Millais' 
lifelong study, and the best things he did were those for 
which he went straightest to the fountain-head. The early 
successes, u The Huguenot," " The Order of Release," 
" The Carpenter's Shop " were astounding pieces of work, 
completely carried out ; but the Nature in them was some 
what cramped. The painting was most skilful, but was 
rather too imitative. In these pictures the stuff of the 
gowns, etc., formed too great a portion of the picture. The 
effect as a whole was often sacrificed to the detail. The 
genius of the painter flashed out in spite of the archaism 
of treatment in the expression and effect. The effect he 
strived for was often noble, more noble than in his later 
works, and there is in these pictures a certain naivete that 
captivates the imagination, as in the works of the early 
Italians, from whom the idea of Pre-Raphaelitism was 
derived. In these early Italians, as in the early Millais 7 , 
there was mighty effort, there was great imagination ; but 
the work was incompletely or, perhaps, it is better to 
say immaturely imagined. 

From the time of " The Vale of Rest " all this changed. 
The pictures that is the best of them became gradually 
more thorough and homogeneous. The imagination was 
gradually matured. Take the " Ophelia " a most beautiful 
picture wondrously worked, enchanting in its deftness of 
handling. That woman floating down the placid stream, 
singing her mad song, had it been rendered with the know 
ledge and breadth with which certain backgrounds were 
afterwards painted (notably " Cherry Ripe " or Mrs. Myers' 
portrait), what a depth and solemnity there would have been ! 
what a shadow beneath those willows ! As it is, this picture 
is a most admirable work the work of an astoundingly 
talented young man. Look at the mystery in " The Eve of 
St. Agnes." Is that not imagination? And " The Martyr 
dom of St. Stephen," and many others. Much as I admire 
"The Carpenter's Shop," I do not think in painter-like 
quality it comes near these. " The Blind Girl " is much 

By permission of the Fine A rt Society 


more thorough. Again, " Speak! Speak!" is a picture none 
but Millais could have attempted, and certainly none but he 
could have carried out. When I saw that picture in his 
studio I told him how delighted I was with it, and I ven 
tured to say, " We do not want Reynolds and Gainsborough 
from you ; we want John Everett Millais. And thus we 
have it." But my remark was not just. However much he 
was influenced by Sir Joshua's success in painting children, 
in no case could any one of his pictures be attributed for 
one moment to anything else. They are stamped with his 

?enius, and all that is good in them is his, and his alone, 
n truth it must be said that many of these pictures failed 
to satisfy those fastidious critics whose canons of Art were 
founded on the works of the masters of the past. I have 
heard eminent men say that they thought " Speak ! Speak ! " 
stupid. They have justly pointed out many incongruities 
and defects in the treatment which perhaps cannot be 
defended. There are the same defects to be found in 
" The Huguenot," and in most of the early pictures. In 
Millais there were often these inconsistencies. Probably 

this arose from his want of early training at school 

For mere school-knowledge he cared nothing. There was 
no one more careless about the history of Art. That a 
picture was good was enough for him he was indifferent to 
the questions that occupied many as to who painted the 
picture. " All I can say is, I should like to have done it," 
he would say. It was in the execution he took unbounded 
delight. The mere laying on of colour was a joy to him, 
for he was a consummate master of that part of the profes 
sion. "If I were a rich man," he said to me when he had 
his admirable portrait of the Duke of Westminster on his 
easel, " If I were a rich man, I would pay someone to paint 
pictures for me, and spend my time in putting high lights in 
the boots." There are many pictures which he painted 
which are astounding tours de force. The Fender chil 
dren, " The Beef Eater," the portrait of Mrs. Myers, and 
many others, are, to my mind, the finest examples of his 
genius, and all display an audacious disregard of what is 
ordinarily received as good Art. There are blues and reds 
harmonised together in a way that no one but Millais could 
have dared, and with a success due to his great genius. 

To criticise such a man is easy. But what should be the 
duty of a true critic ? Surely not to point out faults alone, 


but rather to discover and dwell on beauties. The faultless 
work of Art is cold, passionless, and, I venture to say, 
commonplace. Yet are there some who can only see the 
flannel shirt of the man in " Speak ! Speak ! " and the un 
fortunate leg in " The Huguenot." 

" Every fine work has a short leg," cried Millais when a 
friend criticised his statue. So Voltaire criticised Shake 
speare. Surely transcendent merit atones for such blemishes. 
There is in these works no smell of the lamp. All comes 
bubbling forth straight from the painters mind, and sparkling 
with the magic of his wondrous execution; and in the presence 
of such, criticism should be dumb. 

Millais several times attempted important historical work, 
and, it must be owned, without great success. He had no 
sympathy for abstract and decorative work. So, in spite of 
the prodigious executive skill which may be witnessed nearly 
all through these pictures, the result of the whole is not 
satisfactory. He began his work without much premedita 
tion, and was full of fire and impatience to get to the painting 
in which he delighted. It was not surprising, therefore, that 
he sometimes found himself deceived in his first impression. 
Nevertheless, with his dogged obstinacy he carried the 
picture through, often spending thereon more time than he 
would have bestowed on two or three successful works. 
And he would own that he had often done things unworthy 
of his genius. " And who has n't? " he would add. He was 
much disheartened by the want of success of those pictures 
which he thought were his best. "The Carpenter's Shop" 
was scoffed at; "The Vale of Rest" and "Sir Isumbras" 
both hung on his hands; "The Eve of St. Agnes" was 
unpopular. When I saw it on the wall of its first owner 
I was assured that the whole family infinitely preferred u their 
little Webster." Yet all these have won their way to fame, 
and have all of them fetched many times the price originally 
paid for them. 

There are, however, two notable exceptions to what I have 
said above: "Sir Isumbras" and "Moses." Of "Moses" 
I am unwilling to say much, as it is years since I saw it ; but 
my recollection of it is very vivid, and I remember it as a 
fine and thoroughly successful work. " Sir Isumbras," how 
ever, was at the last Winter Exhibition, and it is not only an 
exception, but it proves the rule. Here we have a picture of 
which any Venetian might be proud; the glamour of the 

"OLIVIA." 1882 
By permission of Mr, fames Orrock 


execution is prodigious. Parts of the painting have never 
been excelled, and the whole tone is highly and essentially 
decorative. Moreover, in this picture alone of all Millais' 
work there is what Ruskin called a " noble conventionalism." 
Nature is there, but truth of effect is wilfully disregarded. 
The whole picture is one glow of decorative colour a climax 
of Pre-Raphaelite training, in which imagination takes the 
place of absolute truth. It so happened that in after-years 
he was asked to retouch this picture, to add some trappings 
to the horse. Steeped as he was then in natural effects, he 
had ceased to care for the fine ideal ; so he tried to reconcile 
the laws of Nature with the imagining of his early years, and 
by doing so certainly injured the general conception. Luckily 
he restrained himself, or he would certainly have spoiled his 
early work. 

To the last Millais was a profound student of Nature, and 
to Nature he went for every trifle he painted. No trouble 
was spared in procuring what he wanted. I went with him 
somewhere in the sixties to several music shops to search 
for a particular coloured back of a piece of music, which he 
wished to paint in a picture called " The Poor Governess." 
But though a true lover of Nature, he was Nature's master, 
not her slave ; and what he painted was no mere imitation 
(as it was in some of his earlier work), but a rendering. In 
his later work he was impetuous, but never careless. He 
had always a fear of appearing laborious. He dreaded hard 
ness, which comes too often from over-elaboration. He knew 
from experience when he had done enough to express what 
he wanted. " Then that will do," he would say, and put 
away his brushes. But he had no fear of detail ; in fact he 
revelled in it. There is no picture he ever painted more 
elaborate than "The Princess Elizabeth" (a comparatively 
late work) and none more masterly in treatment. In some 
of his landscapes " The Old Garden," " The Fringe of the 
Moor," and other late pictures the details are as fully 
carried out as in the "Ferdinand and Ariel" or the 
' Ophelia." 

When we were hanging the Millais Exhibition, many 
of his pictures were brought to us in a very deplorable 
state of filth. I mention this as a warning to owners of 
many noble works. Glass does not entirely protect a picture 
against the influence of our unfortunate climate, and it would 
be well for the reputation of this great artist if, from time to 
IT 26 


time, the owners of his incomparable works would have them 
carefully washed and looked at. 

To sum up, Millais, as an artist, was essentially of his age. 
He lived and worked with a keen sense of all that was 
around him. He was a modern of the moderns, owing less 
than any painter I know to those who had gone before or 
those who were contemporary. He loved sport, he enjoyed 
all kinds of games. To the last he was a joyous and en 
gaging companion. And all these qualities we find in his 
pictures, realised through his vivid perceptive qualities, and 
rendered as Nature has never been rendered before by his 
transcendental powers as a painter. His nature was as his 
Art joyous, bubbling with life, incapable of meanness; a 
boy till the last, yet a man of the greatest power. No 
painter excelled in so many branches of Art, no one has been 
more loved or so regretted by his contemporaries. 

When " Flaming June," by Leighton, occupied the centre 
of the north wall of the big room of the Royal Academy, 
" Speak ! Speak ! " hung in the corresponding centre. The 
one seemed to me to be like music the harmonies all 
thought out, the lines carefully and artfully composed, self- 
contained, melodious, and monumental in qualities, like a 
great sonata. The other like the drama full of humanity 
and feeling, stirring a different set of nerves, striking a more 
human chord, enchanting us by its surprise and by its wisdom. 
That two such men should have lived at the same time is a 
glory to our school. At the commencement of our Royal 
Academy there were also two men who rose supreme above 
their contemporaries Sir Joshua Reynolds and Thomas 
Gainsborough. They were rivals in the same art of portrait 
painting. When Gainsborough was dying he sent for Sir 
Joshua, from whom he had been estranged for some time, to 
bid him a long farewell. "We shall meet again," said the 
dying man, " and Vandyck will be of that company." These 
two other great artists and friends have joined Reynolds, 
Gainsborough and Vandyck now. and we may rest assured 
that the great ones of the past will proudly welcome them as 




I FIRST saw John Everett Millais in the early fifties. As 
a student in the Temple I had formed a great friendship 
with Frank Talfourd, the eldest son of Mr. Justice Talfourd, 
and so I became a frequent guest at the judge's house in 
Russell Square, where very attractive gatherings took place. 
Most eminent judges, well known authors and authoresses, 
popular actors and actresses would be found mingling there. 
In one evening I listened to the sage sayings of the Chief 
Baron Sir Frederick Pollock, was introduced to Charlotte 
Bronte, and escorted Mrs. Keeley to the supper-room. 

At one of these gatherings I met John Millais. He was 
then some twenty-three or twenty-four years of age, but had 
already secured much fame for himself as the great leader 
of the Pre-Raphaelite school ; and I well recollect how 
interested I was when first I saw " young Millais." He was 
standing in a doorway talking to a lady. What a handsome 
couple they were! The lady was his future wife. 

Some years elapsed before I became intimate with Millais. 
Being elected a member of the Garrick Club, I found Millais 
one of the foremost amongst the distinguished men frequent 
ing the old Club house in King Street. Night after night 
some twelve or fifteen men gathered in the smoking-room 
of the Club. Thackeray, Dickens, Anthony Trollope, John 
Leech, Robert Keeley, Charles Reade, Shirley Brooks, and 
others equally well known in different callings formed a group 
it was pleasant enough to associate with. Amongst them all 
my closest intimacy was with Millais. 

There was one incident connected with Millais 3 early days 
at the Garrick Club he never wearied of repeating and laugh 
ing at. At the afternoon whist Charles Reade constantly 



assisted. He was a very slow player and occupied a long 
time to consider very little. One of the players, an intimate 
friend of his, on the occasion of a longer pause than usual, 
said to him, " Now, old Cockarnaroo, play something." 
Reade's dignity was offended, and in the evening he wrote a 
formal letter demanding an apology and intimating that, 
failing it, an appeal would be made to the committee. The 
member so addressed replied by gravely acknowledging that 
if he had applied a term so offensive as " old Cockamaroo " 
to any member of the Club, there would doubtless be serious 
ground for complaint, and an apology ought certainly to be 
made ; but when he recalled to Mr. Reade's recollection that 
the term employed was entirely different in its meaning and 
derivation, viz., " old cockawax, 5 ' he was quite sure that Mr. 
Reade would naturally desire to withdraw his letter and 
express regret for having fallen into so strange an error. 
Before it was sent, this reply was shown to Millais, who 
sought out Reade and informed him that, having been one of 
the whist-players, he could assure him that the words used 
were "old cockawax," and that therefore as a man of honour 
Reade was bound to apologise. Next afternoon the affair 
terminated in much laughter. 

Shooting and fishing we both enjoyed, and in pursuit of 
these sports we associated much together. During many 
years the early days of August would find Millais somewhere 
in the neighbourhood of Birnam, in the highest spirits pre 
paring for the twelfth, and especially looking forward to the 
later period of the autumn when, grouse and black-game 
having begun to fail and partridges having become wild, he 
would commence fishing on a stretch of water he rented on 
the Tay. And so it was to the last. He was a good shot 
with the rifle as well as with the gun, and many a good head 
was secured by him. 

One little incident of his fishing days interested him much. 
Whilst fishing in the Murthly water towards the close of an 
October day, he hooked a magnificent salmon. It was a long 
fight some hour or so but at last the gaff got well home 
and the fish was brought to land. Millais, delighted, ex 
claimed that it was the finest fish he had ever caught; and 
so well it might be, for it weighed forty-two pounds, and was 
of a beautiful shape and colour. Immediately he began to 
discuss to whom it should be sent/ " It will go to the best 
fellow I know, and that is Lord Granville " ; and so, that night, 

By per mission of Thomas McLean and Son 


the beautiful fish was despatched to the Foreign Secretary. 
Day by day passed and no acknowledgment arrived. Millais' 
pride was hurt, feeling that the present was not appreciated ; 
but he would make no inquiry. Early in the next year I met 
Lord Granville and told him how proud Millais had been to 
send him an almost record fish, and how disappointed he was 
at receiving no acknowledgment. " Your news is most 
acceptable," said Lord Granville, "for we have been much 
troubled. When unpacking the fish the cook destroyed the 
label, and having no letter, I never could learn from whom 
the present came. We wrote to all the friends whom we 
knew to possess salmon-fishing, but without any avail, except 
that most of them thought that the inquiry represented a 
diplomatic suggestion that a large salmon in prime condition 
would be regarded in Carlton Terrace as an acceptable 
present. Millais shall have a full apology to-night." 

There was one task he dreaded that of making a speech. 
I recollect well how, one Sunday evening in December, 
Anthony Trollope prevailed on Millais to give a promise 
to preside over the Literary Fund Dinner in the following 
May. Those intervening weeks were full of torture. 
Much was written and rewritten, much committed to 
memory, and much forgotten ; the lay-figures in the studio 
were addressed with great vigour, but the result was not 
satisfactory, and at length, a friend's assistance was called 
in ; a speech was produced for Millais to learn, but the task 
was most distasteful the style was too poetic, he said. But 
one idea introduced in the peroration caught his fancy and he 
consented to learn for the purpose of delivering the few 
sentences which constituted the conclusion of the composition. 
As the day of the dinner approached anxiety, represented by 
considerable irritability, developed itself. Much solitude was 
sought, and much time was spent in preparation. 

At length the dreaded day and hour arrived, and a crowd 
of literary men and others gathered to do honour to the 
great artist who had consented to plead the cause of charity. 
Lord Derby, the President of the Literary Fund, sat by 
Millais' side. The friend who had suggested the peroration 
was near him. 

The speech was a straightforward statement of the position 
of the Literary Fund and its work; but as the peroration 
was approached, signs of nervousness became apparent, and 
at length a full stop was arrived at. Turning to his friend, 


he said, " By Jingo, i have forgotten all about it ! " and 
then, producing his notes from his coat-pocket, he exclaimed 
to the audience, " Oh, it is all right ; here it is ! " and pro 
ceeded at a rattling pace to read the fatal composition, which 
being accomplished, Millais, a good deal out of breath, sat 
down, loudly cheered for a speech which had well accom 
plished the result wished for. " What an artist you are ! " 
said Lord Derby, " and how well you know how to conceal 
your Art. When you were speaking you were exactly like 
Blondin always pretending to fall off, and never doing so. 
You were onty acting." 

When he was made a baronet, he valued the honour 
for very practical reasons. Shortly after the title was 
conferred upon him, Millais paid a professional visit to 
Manchester. Upon his return, addressing some friends in 
his cheery way, he said, " You fellows think it is nothing to 
be made a baronet, but I can tell you it means a great deal ; 
and I like it Here, you see, I went to the hotel at Man 
chester, and I said to a beautiful young person in the bar, 
* I want a bedroom with a fire in it.' Off she went to a 
pipe, and said, 'Whist! No. 238 and a fire. 5 She then 
asked me to write my name, which I did. Looking at me, 
she said, c Are you Sir John ? ' Upon my answering * Yes/ 
back to the same pipe she went, and said, c Whist! Not 
238 No. 23, and a good fire in it. 7 Now you see the use 
of being a baronet, my boys ! " 

Enjoying, as I did for thirty years, the closest intimacy 
with John Millais, I believe I know his character well and 
yet it is somewhat difficult to describe. It seemed always 
to occur to him that whatever was in his mind ought to 
be spoken. For instance, he had every confidence in him 
self as an artist a confidence that represented the measure 
of his success and this belief he was apt openly to ex 
press not boastfully or arrogantly, but in a simple, honest 
way, as if he were stating a truism of which there could 
be no doubt and all this true faith in himself never bore 
the complexion of egotism. Certainly it never was egotism 
of a comparative character. Often as I have heard Millais 
praise the merits of other artists, I never heard him detract 
from them. Truly could he have said, " Enemies I have 
none, my rivals are my friends," for so he always treated 
them. And as he was sincere in his thoughts of himself 
and in all the words he uttered, equally true was he in all 

By permission of Thomas McLean and Son 


his dealings with others. This truth made friendships long 
and fast. Full well I learnt to value the one he gave to me. 
I know I have never possessed one I could more certainly 
depend upon. All the traits of his character combined to 
produce a most cheerful companionship. All his manly 
qualities were mingled with a boyish brightness, which 
made him the loved centre of his home, and caused a flow 
of mirth to brighten the generous hospitality he loved to 
afford and his friends to enjoy. 

There were others besides his friends who owed him 
much. Proud of his own success, he always remembered 
that he ought to repay his good fortune by helping others. 
To young artists his door and hand were never closed, 
and no man worked harder in the cause of any charity 
than he did in aid of the Artists' Benevolent Fund. It is 
not for me to discuss Millais' powers as an artist, but I 
have often thought that the strong truthfulness of his char 
acter showed itself in his pictures. He was the popular 
people's artist because he placed objects on canvas exactly 
as every body had seen them in Nature. To that Nature 
the artist was strictly true. For the figurative expression 
which Sir Walter Scott employed when speaking of litera 
ture to Lockhart, " If a man will paint from Nature he 
will be most likely to interest and amuse those who are 
daily looking at it," is a truth every artist will do well to 
bear in mind. 


WHEN I first saw your father I was a girl in the schoolroom, 
and even to my schoolroom eyes he seemed scarcely more 
than a boy. Perhaps he looked younger than he really was. 
He was not so handsome then as he grew to be later, but he 
was very striking in appearance, with wonderful thick, bushy 
hair ; he was gay, strong, and he talked. He was somebody, 
in short. We already knew some of his pictures. In those 
days it was our custom to admit ourselves to certain private 
views of our own. We used to get up very early, and, with 
some girls who lived close by, go off to the Academy 
together, and be at the doors when they first opened. On 


one occasion when we arrived, although it was so very early 
still, I remember there was already a little crowd assembled 
round a certain picture. We had to wait to see it till we 
could get to be in front of the people. I gazed, charmed 
and bewildered. Was it faeryland, or was it all real ? That 
shining glen, that floating, radiant figure ? I knew not what 
I saw, but the picture took hold of my imagination, as some 
pictures do ; and after years and years, when I saw the 
" Ophelia " again, it was not less beautiful than I remembered 
it. When, as girls, we went abroad, and could not see the 
Millais pictures, we used to read the papers and imagine 
them for ourselves ; and I can remember being in Paris and 
trying to make a fancy sketch of " The Naturalist " with all 
the brightest purples and greens in my paint-box. It was an 
absurdity, but it shows what a present fact those special 
pictures were for the girls of my generation. 

Soon after your parents' marriage my father took us with 
him one day when he went to call upon them, somewhere 
near Montagu Square. I do not remember being shown any 
pictures on this occasion, but there is one I can still see. 
Your mother was recovering from some illness, and she was 
extended straight in some beautiful glowing dress upon a 
sofa, with her head resting upon a round gilt leather cushion, 
which made a " background of pale gold " to her face. , 

We saw most of your parents after my father's death, 
when my sister and I were living very near to Cromwell 
Place, and we used to meet your father in the street and go 
to see him sometimes in his studio, and now and then he 
came to our house. I can remember one little speech of his 
to some very charming and fastidious young women who 
were staying with us then. " Ah ! " said he, when they 
objected to someone or other, "you young women are all 
alike. You expect a man to be as handsome as the Apollo 
Belvidere, and as wise as Socrates, and as rich as Croesus, 
and nothing short of perfection all round will content you." 
And then, in a sort of humorous way, he began enumerating 
various attributes of various friends; A.'s hair and B.'s eyes, 
and C.'s white teeth and D.'s amusing wit, etc., etc. u Only 
you expect to get them all together in one individual," he 
said. He had a way of illuminating people and brightening 
up commonplaces. He always spoke straight out, and even 
his adverse criticism didn't hurt, it was so kind and so true. 
I remember taking a picture to him once that an importunate 

By permission of Mrs. Dyson Terrins 


friend was most anxious he should see. " You know better 
than to bring me such a thing as that ! " said he. " Take it 
away." And to this day I blush when I recall that work of 
art. Simplicity and the directness of his blame took away 
the sting of it ; for it is not so much criticism that people- 
resent generally as the spirit of censure in which it is given. 

Once he took several of us I am ashamed to say I only 
remember myself to the National Gallery. He was not 
afraid to speak, and to speak out loud, and went round 
with us. The loiterers opened their eyes and ears. " The 
Triumph of Bacchus " became a glorified triumph indeed as- 
he stood before it praising and cheering, but the poor little 
later Raphaels, "St. Cecilia" and others, might well turn, 
pale and hang their affected he ads as that flashing sword 
of justice went by. 

Almost the last time I ever went to see him in his- 
studio, that beautiful picture of "The Old Garden " stood 
upon the easel. I said how beautiful I thought it. " Do 
you like it?" he answered rather sadly;"! can tell you 
that a bit of my life has gone into that picture." It was on 
that same day I think, but I am not sure, that he showed me- 
his daughter Mary's portrait. " Here is something you must- 
like very much," he said, and then he went on with a father's 
fond pride to praise the sitter 

I once saw an artist at work in a little wood near Knole on 
a certain day in July, when we all started on a happy expedi 
tion Mrs. Millais had invited me to join. Her sister was 
there and the Trollopes, and Mr. Charles Clifford. We had 
found sunshine everywhere and a drag at Sevenoaks, and as 
we walked through the woods, we came upon this painter 
at work under the trees. Our host stopped for a moment. 
"Why," said he to the painter, "you have not got your 
lights right. Look, this is what you want" And he took 
the brush out of his hand and made a line or two on the 
picture, and then nodded to him and walked away. Mr. 
Trollope laughed. " The man looks bewildered ; he ought, 
to know it is Millais," said he, and he ran back and told him. 
Then someone else laughed, and said, " He ought to know it 
is Trollope." So a second message was conveyed to the 
unfortunate painter, and, greatly amused, we all walked OIL 
through the woods to where the carriage was waiting. 

The last time I sat by your father at dinner was at the- 
house of my husband's sister, Mrs. Freshfield. It was a very- 


great pleasure to me to find Sir John there, and still more 
to find my place by his at dinner. After a long talk on books 
and pictures, he told me a ghost story, which, as he assured 
me it was true, I venture to repeat here. It was of an old 
manor-house in the North, standing in an old Scotch garden. 
A London lawyer, who liked to go to Scotland, happened 
to see it one day as he was driving across the moor, and he 
expressed a wish to the friend with whom he was staying 
for some such retreat to come to with his wife. She was 
out of health, and he wanted to get her away from London, 
and he added that it was just what they would both like, 
only that he feared he would never be able to afford it, 
and he named the sum he could give. The friend answered 
that he might get such a house well within the price he 
named ; this one was going to be put up to auction, but 
there was some ghost story about it, and no one up there 
would bid. Then the lawyer went back to town ; but 
shortly afterwards he received a telegram from his friend 
in Scotland telling him that the house had been put up 
to auction, and, finding that it was going far below its 
value, he had secured it on the lawyer's behalf. The 
lawyer's wife was no less delighted than her husband to 
hear of this purchase. She had been for some years past 
suffering from strange hysterical attacks, and was longing 
for change. Her attacks came on in her sleep, and she 
would wake utterly exhausted. She always had one dream 
of an old house that she never remembered to have seen 
when she was awake ; she used to find herself hurrying 
up and down the corridors, and along the paths and terraces 
of the old-fashioned garden. The place was all perfectly 
familiar to her, and she knew every yew hedge and turn 
of the paths. She could not stop herself, though she would 
be sinking with an exhaustion which unnerved her for hours 
after she awoke. 

When the autumn came the family set off for the North. 
As they drove up the avenue leading to the house, the 
lawyer noticed that his wife was looking very strangely, 
but he put it down to fatigue. When he rang the bell the 
door was opened by the housekeeper, to whom he introduced 
himself, and said a friendly word or two of greeting, and 
almost immediately he began to ask her whether anything 
more had been heard of the ghost whether it had appeared 
lately. " What sort of ghost it is ? " said he. The house- 


keeper did not answer, but stood quite still, looking hard at 
her new mistress. " No one can answer that question better 
than the lady here," she said at last, slowly. As for the poor 
lady, she gave a sort of cry, for as she came into the hall she 
saw the house which she had always dreamt of, and where 
she herself had been seen again and again. The end of the 
story, I believe, was that the lady got quite well in the fine 
Scotch air, and quite gave up dreams and astral bodies. 



NEXT to his work, my father's friends would say that from 
his fishing he derived most pleasure, but those who knew 
him best knew that second to his Art came the sister Art of 

His father is described in some early letters as " incurably 
musical," and he was undoubtedly a musician who might 
have made a name for himself had he cared to enter the 
competition and criticism of public life; but he lacked 

It was sufficient happiness to my grandfather to enjoy his 
gifts and talents in the circle of his friends and family, so in 
an atmosphere of music the little boy grew up, and he used 
to lie awake listening to the trios and quartettes performed 
in the little Normandy drawing-room. 

From the age of seven years his time and talents were 
persistently devoted to the absorbing work of his life, so 
that he acquired no musical education except this early 
insight into classical music ; but an inherited taste and a 
fine musical ear developed in him surprising discrimination 
and love of music, and made music at all times a necessity to 

Few of his admirers realise how much music there is in 
his pictures ; how much music helped him in his painting. 
He heard and knew nearly all the great singers, executants, 
composers of his generation, placing them according to their 
merit in the pigeon-holes of his brain with extraordinary 

11 27 


In Cromwell Place between the years 1863-78 such men 
as Alfred Cellier, Frederic Clay, Arthur Blunt popularly 
known as Arthur Cecil, the actor were amongst the habitues 
of the studio. 

Blunt would be set down to " moon," aTs my father called it. 
He possessed little voice, and that of the voilee order, but a 
touch of rare quality, and a natural gift for melody and har 
mony which enabled him to charm and fascinate his audience 
by the hour. 

With him came Cellier and Freddy Clay ; and many were 
the refined songs and operas of these, our talented friends, 
that delighted my father, and filled our childhood's days with 
memories of lovely lyrics and dainty ditties. These men 
proved that light music need not necessarily be vulgar, that 
it can be scholarly, artistic, and inspired, and though their 
work be no more than charming if there be enduring life 
in charm it will live. 

In saying this I fain would pay some small tribute to the 
talents of those who made sunny days sunnier by their gifts 
and personalities. 

Closely associated with those early days was Arthur 
Sullivan. He was organist about this time at St. Peter's, 
Onslow Gardens, and we used often to see him. My father 
loved him and admired his genius, and in the closing days of 
his life Sullivan was one of the last of his friends he asked 
to see. 

In asking Sir Arthur to give me some personal recollections 
of my father I feel I cannot do better than record them here 
in his own words : 

" Millais was a man who inspired those who knew him 
intimately with the greatest personal affection. There was 
something exceptionally lovable in his nature, and he was so 
large-minded and generous. Like all artists who have 
achieved distinction, his opinion was constantly asked by 
artists of lesser rank and amateurs, and he must have been 
sorely tried at times, for he shrank from giving pain by tell 
ing the truth, and yet he was too honest to give a flattering 
or false opinion. He therefore invariably looked for some 
point which showed either promise or fulfilment, or a striv 
ing for what was right, and on this point he would dwell 
and this only so that he always found something kind and 
encouraging to say, and at the same time was honest and 

"THE CAPTIVE." 1881 
By ftrmission of the Fine Art Society 


" I made his acquaintance in 1863, shortly after I began to 
make a name for myself, and from that day to his death I held 
him in the greatest affection, and I know that he returned 
my feeling towards him. He came frequently to the Satur 
day afternoon concerts at the Crystal Palace, and afterwards 
we would dine and spend the evening at the Scott Russells', 
who lived at Sydenham. 

" The girls of the family were brilliantly gifted and highly 
educated, and (frequently joined by Henry Phillip, the painter, 
George Grove, Frank Burnand, Fred Clay, and distinguished 
artists and literary men) we would discuss music, painting, 
poetry, literature, and even science until the clock told us 
that the last train back to London was nearly due. 

" On every subject Millais held his own, and his opinions 
were honest, fearless, and generous, and always worth listen 
ing to. Those evenings were amongst the happiest of my 
life. The youngest daughter of the house, Alice, sat to him 
as the model for the central figure in ' The Romans leaving 

" It had long been my desire and ambition to do a work 
which should combine the three sister Arts, poetry, painting, 
and music; and this idea I imparted to Tennyson and 
Millais. They both fell in with the notion, and Tennyson 
for this purpose wrote the little cycle of songs called ' The 
Window, or the Songs of the Wrens.' These I set to music 
and Millais began the illustrations; each song was to have its 
accompanying picture. But difficulties arose, and for reasons 
unnecessary to enter into here, the illustrations were never 
completed. The first and only one done I remember well. 
It was a lovely drawing of a girl at a window, birds flying 
around and 'vine and eglantine' trailing about it. This 
drawing was afterwards bought by the late Henry Leslie, I 
believe, for a frontispiece to one of his musical works. 

" It has always been a bitter regret to me that we were 
unable to carry out my idea. I am not in a position to speak 
as to Millais' judgment in other matters, but in music he 
possessed an unerring instinct for what was good and artis 
tically right,** although he had no technical knowledge of the 
art, nor did his love and enthusiasm for it blind his judgment. 
He was conservative in his love for the old masters and 
liberal in his admiration of the new. 

" After all, the same great general laws govern all the 
Arts, and his technical mastery over one gave him a standard 


by which he could gauge the weak parts in another. If I 
wanted a good, sound opinion on a new work I would have 
turned to Millais with confidence his impressions were un 
failingly right." 

These then were the constant friends of the house, but not 
by any means the only musicians he counted as friends, for 
during the progress of years my father was proud to welcome 
such brother artists as Halle, Neruda, Joachim, Piatti, 
Essipoff, De Soria, the Henschels, Rubinstein, and many 
others whom memory fails me to recall. 

Rubinstein in his various visits to London always came to 
dine with him, and it used to be with us a subject of con 
jecture whether my father would tempt Rubinstein to the 
piano, or Rubinstein detain my father at the card-table. 

Rubinstein fancied himself as great a whist-player as he 
was a pianist. 

I recollect one evening in the studio in Palace Gate, Rubin 
stein had set himself down to a game, and was playing rather 
worse than usual. My father suffered acutely through one 
or two rubbers, until at last he rose in desperation, saying, 
" If you don't stop I will go and play the piano." 

My father was early attracted to the modern romantic 
school of music, and was perhaps among Wagner's earliest 

When Wagner came to London in 1877, he P a id my father 
a visit at the studio in Cromwell Place. My father was 
deeply impressed by the appearance and manner of the great 
poet-musician, whom all the world was then ridiculing, and 
believing his immortal work to be a joke or an insanity. 

My father invited Wagner and Frau Cosima Wagner to 
dine with him, but when the expected day arrived Frau 
Cosima came alone, to the great disappointment of my parents 
and everyone present the great genius being indisposed or 
prevented at the last moment. 

I have said how necessary music was to him, and how much 
it helped him to paint his pictures. In the Cromwell Place 
days a piano always stood in the studio, but when he moved 
to Palace Gate in 1878 the piano stood in the drawing-room, 
separated from the studio by folding doors. 

Here as the hour drew near for the morning's work to 
begin he would roll the partitions aside, saying, " I won't 
say ' no ' to a little music." One of his daughters would 
then play his favourite themes or explore the latest musical 

"A REVERIE." 1868 
Used in Leslie's " Little Songs," but originally drawn for a joint work by Millais, Sullivan, and Tennyson 


novelty operatic, symphonic, or lyric and if anything 
struck him as unusually beautiful he would appear for the 
briefest instant in the doorway, palette and maul-stick in 
hand, and with characteristic directness say, " That 's all 
right ; that fellow knows all about it ; play it again " ; and 
disappear in a flash back to his work. The portions that 
thus pleased him were, so to speak, labelled for future 
reference in his mind, as " the melancholy bit," " the pathetic 
bit," "the polite bit," "the dainty bit," even "the curly 
bit," and we always knew what he meant and to what he 

He was a great admirer of Bizet's. When Carmen was pro 
duced in London he never tired of praising it. L? Arlesienne^ 
too, he loved, and he used to compare much of the charm of 
Goring Thomas's work to Bizet and Massenet. 

It must not be supposed from this that the lighter and 
more modern school was all he could appreciate. Few men 
ever took greater or more discriminating pleasure than he 
did in the great works of the classical masters. 

I have seen him deeply moved by a chorale of Bach's, 
and in the evening it was his habit to throw himself into^ 
an armchair, saying, " Now a little music, and then to bed." 
Then he would listen to Scarlatti, Bach, Beethoven, or^ 
according to his mood, Chopin, Schumann, Grieg, Brahms, 
etc., seeing and enjoying beauty in the individuality of 

In later days he would listen to Parsifal, The Meister- 
singer, Tristan, The Ring, or at least as much of them as my 
husband could sketch on the piano for him. He would listen 
to all he could hear or be told of the Bayreuth world with 
that keen interest, freshness, and appreciation which belonged 
to a unique personality. 

At an early period of his life he frequented the Italian 
opera, and while fully appreciating its beauties, at the same 
time he was alive to its absurdities. For years, too, he 
attended Professor Ella's Musical Union that quaint little 
man, who certainly understood the art of chamber music. In 
the centre of St. James's Hall, not on the platform, during the 
months of May, June, July, was given a wealth of musical 
treasures by the greatest executants in Europe, and" my father 
invariably found his way there once a week, accompanied by 
my mother or one of his daughters. Apart from this he was 
never much of a concert-goer, nor latterly an opera-goer,. 


except, perhaps, some special allurement such as The Meister- 
singer, Tristan, Lohengrin, etc. He disliked the restraint 
and conditions under which he had to listen, too much to 
derive much pleasure, but among his artist friends he never 
lost an opportunity of hearing "good " music. 

I remember certain memorable Sunday evenings at Sir 
Charles Halle's, and others in Rubinstein's rooms in the 
Hotel Dieudonne, in Ryder Street, where the great pianist 
would not only welcome, but entertain his guests, assisted by 
such artists as Sophie Menter, Wilhemji (Thekla Friedlander) 
and others. He always went to Sir Frederick Leighton's 
annual party, and among his many friends I may mention 
Sir Arthur Sullivan, Madame Neruda (Lady Halle), Mr. 
Alma Tadema, Mr. Henry Joachim, Mr. Rudolph Lehmann, 
Mr. Frederick Lehmann, Monsieur Blumenthal, Mr. Burnard, 
with whom Madame Schumann always stayed during her 
various visits to London. He often told us with pride that 
the first time Madame Neruda played in London was in his 
studio in Cromwell Place. 

It was from one of these visits that he recently returned, 
pleased and interested to have met Mascagni. He had been 
to spend the day with Arthur Sullivan at his hou#e on the 
river. There he found a small gathering of musicians, 
Madame Melba, Tosti, Mascagni. They spent most of the 
day on the water, and my father kept them amused " fasci 
nated " was the word used by the one who told me of it 
by his brilliantly high spirits and unrestrained enjoyment of 
everything. Mascagni could not speak English, nor my 
father Italian ; but they managed to understand each other, 
with the occasional aid of an interpreter, and they kept the 
whole party roaring with laughter at their attempts to discuss 
matters connected with painting, music, cooking, and every 
variety of subject. 

Then his illness came, and still music befriended him, and 
he would have it when he could. 

One afternoon in May, 1896, he requested to be played to, 
and having heard some of his favourite "bits," he asked, 
almost in a whisper, " Anything new of Parry ? " 

For the moment I knew of nothing, and then I thought of 
a prelude in six flats from an early work of Parry's, entitled 
Characterbilder, which I knew he had not heard. He 
listened with evident enjoyment, and at the end murmured, 
" Beautiful." It was his farewell to the piano, the drawing- 




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room, the studio. Next day he was worse, and he never 
came upstairs again. 

I have tried to give a faithful account of my father's taste 
and love for music, but I may be accused of representing a 
taste so cosmopolitan as to be no taste at all. My father 
was a consumer, not a producer, and a consumer may be 
permitted as wide a range as he can find ; whereas a pro 
ducer had better, if he is to produce well, remain within the 
narrower limits of his own creative faculty. 

The ordinary man or woman who says, " I like only Bach," 
" I like only Wagner," sets forth limitations that cannot exist 
in music. 

I remember once a lady saying to the greatest pianist of 
our time, " Monsieur, do you like Wagner? " 

" Madame," he replied, " in the garden of music there are 
many flowers, and they are all beautiful." So it was with my 
father. He drew from every flower all it had to give him of 
sweetness and delight. 



Sir Noel Paton, R.s. A. Professor Sir William Richmond, R. A. Sir George Reid, 
F.R.S.A. H. W. B. Davis, R.A. Lines by the Poet Laureate. 


IN default of contemporary records, it becomes more and 
more difficult as years advance to recall with distinctness 
individual incidents of the far past, however vivid as a whole 
their recollections may seem. But some of these, by which 
the future has been more or less consciously influenced, 
remain indelibly impressed upon the memory. Of such 
was my first contact with Millais an auspicious beginning 
of an unclouded friendship of more than fifty years. It 
came about in this wise. When drawing as a probationer 
for studentship at the Royal Academy, in the spring of 
1843, I had found a place on the area of "the dingy 
shrine of the antique, where dear George Jones held rule," 
the semicircle of raised seats behind having been previously 
appropriated. I was working from the statue known as 
" The Fighting Gladiator," on an unusually large sheet of 
paper, which hung loosely over either side of my drawing- 
board, to the undisguised amusement of the overlooking 
fellow-workers, whose sheets of paper had been religiously 
stretched over their respective boards, in accordance with 
the usage of the schools, of which, however, as an outer 
barbarian, fresh from the North, I knew nothing, never 
having previously passed through any school. A certain 
stir had just been made by the appearance of a rather 
good-looking student, divested of the moustache (at that 
time a rare artistic decoration) which he had hitherto 
worn ; the excitement becoming vociferous on his pathetic 
announcement of the reason for the sacrifice his deter 
mination never to wear a moustache till he could draw the 


By permission ofMr.J. Orrock 


Apollo ! in which task it appeared he had failed. But shortly 
thereafter another and more lively commotion was raised 
by the advent ^of a boy of singular beauty and very smartly 
habited in a little black stirtout, with three rows of buttons 
on the breast, as I noted. The juvenile visitor, who was 
evidently a familiar and welcome figure there, forthwith 
proceeded, in boyish fashion, to tease several students of 
a greater growth himself already a student of three years' 
standing and to make critical remarks on their perform 
ances, which always seemed to be taken in good part. 
By-and-by, no doubt attracted by my audaciously uncon 
stitutional arrangement for work, he stepped down and 
stood beside me very quietly, not reaching much above 
my head as I sat. After some tentative remarks about 
the gladiator, and inquiries as to whether I had attended 
any drawing classes in London, he told me his name was 
"Johnnie Millais" (of course I did not then know how 
distinguished the name had already become in the schools), 
and asked for mine, which I gave him. He then inquired 
what sort of Art I was * going in for/ and by way of 
answer I put into his hand a small note-book containing 
first ideas for outline illustrations of Milton's Comus and 
the Prometheus Unbound of Shelley, all necessarily treated 
freely in the nude. He glanced hurriedly at one or two 
of these jottings, and exclaiming, in an emphatically depre 
catory tone, " Oh, is that the sort of thing you do ? " handed 
the note-book back, as if glad to get quit of it, and turned 
abruptly away. Feeling that "that sort of thing" would 
not do, I quickly caught his retreating skirts, and saying, 
rather grimly I suspect, " No ! you shall not go till you 
really look at these ! " put the note-book again into his 
hand. A little nervously, and with a somewhat flushed 
face, but with quite judicial composure, he proceeded to 
examine the sketches; and speedily finding they were not 
the objectionable " sort of thing " he had hastily assumed, 
he threw an arm impulsively round my shoulder, saying, 
in a very different tone, "Oh, you are all right!" and 
from that moment we were friends. The evident purity 
of mind and the straightforward honesty of the boy, with 
his generous amends for a momentary injustice, made a 
deep impression on me, which the whole tenor of his sub 
sequent life has rendered only more deep and enduring. 
Another illustration of Millais' boyish honesty, thorough- 
11 28 


ness, and courage I recall, though it may be less creditable 
to myself. While I was engaged on the required drawing 
of the Academy ecorchee, in the rather shadowy corner it 
used to occupy as students of that time may remember, 
if, indeed, any of these still linger on this side of the dark 
river he sauntered over to me, and, finding I was writing 
the names of bones and muscles on the drawing from brief 
memoranda made at home, where I was then studying anatom 
ical matters seriously enough, he gave me quite a little lecture 
on the immorality of the proceeding, to the effect that I 
ought to have committed all these names to memory as 
he had done. Of this, as a condition, I had not been 
aware, but thenceforward I acted upon his suggestion 
rather wondering, however, if all the students were as con 
scientious in this matter as " Johnnie Millais." 

That the " young Apelles " could take as well as give 
criticism and advice, the following incident will show. 
Towards the autumn of the same year, when about to 
return to Scotland, I unexpectedly encountered him in the 
Elgin Room at the British Museum ; and after dreaming, 
and no doubt raving with him for some time among the 
marbles, as young devotees of the beautiful are bound to 
do, I accompanied him, on his invitation, to the house then 
occupied by his family, for the purpose of seeing some of 
his work. In the sunny little drawing-room we found his 
sister, a tall, splendidly grown girl, of beauty different from, 
but not less remarkable than, his own. Having introduced 
me, in very friendly and flattering terms, as a fellow-student,, 
who had just been a successful competitor for a prize offered 
by the Art Union of London a fact which, in that day of 
small things, he seemed pleased to consider a distinction 
he left the room to fetch his drawings. Whereupon Miss- 
Millais turned towards me, saying, in a low and earnest 
voice, " And you really think Johnnie has genius ? " My 
warm assurance that of this there could be no shadow of 
doubt evidently gratified her; and she thanked me with 
tears in her eyes, but a bright smile on her lips. The 
drawings brought for inspection were subject compositions, 
of various kinds he brought no 'Academy drawings/ of 
course. I found them, though somewhat conventional in 
character, full of fancy, and distinctly ambitious in aim,, 
some of them containing great numbers of figures, all 
treated in a more or less sketchy manner. But I observed 



that^ in regard to details generally, and the extremities 
particularly, they were dangerously loose and wanting in 
study. And while according to the designs as a whole 
my warm and almost wondering admiration on the strength 
of my seniority by several years and of my greater growth 
by a good many inches I ventured, despite my conscious 
ness that already this " marvellous boy " was more of an 
artist than I, to draw his attention to this defect, and to 
urge that he should altogether avoid crowded scenes, and 

By permission of Mr. H. Makins 

choose subjects embracing not more than two or three 
figures to be thoroughly studied and wrought out, especially 
in regard to hands and feet. For these strictures and sug 
gestions, the propriety of which he freely admitted, he 
thanked me cordially; and when closing the street door 
on my departure, looked after me with a kindly smile and 
nod, saying, " I shall not forget about the hands and feet " 
the last words of his I heard for several eventful years. 

Evidently he had been in no way spoilt by his boyish dis 
tinction ; nor was he ever spoilt by the honours and splendid 


success of his maturity. From the first he was too true an 
artist had too high ideals before him to be otherwise than 
humble at heart. And notwithstanding his honest, and 
characteristically outspoken, appreciation of that success, he 
retained to the end the inward modesty of all great genius. 
Of this I had many proofs. One I may recall. On returning 
to the charming Cromwell Place studio one day after lunch 
when he had been even more bright and cheery than usual 
he drifted into serious talk about Art, and the trials incident 
to the artistic temperament ; in the course of which he spoke 
of the frequent difficulty he experienced in his work, and of 
his almost invariable dissatisfaction with its results. I could 
not help laughingly expressing my inability to conceive how 
he with his consummate mastery of technique, and with 
that mastery so universally acknowledged could so feel. 
" Ah ! my dear friend," he replied, in tones that vouched for 
the sincerity of his words, "that is all you know! Why, 
there are times when I am so crushed and humiliated by 
.my sense of incapacity, that I literally skulk about, the 
house, ashamed to be seen by my own servants ! " a con 
fession from which I could not but derive consolation, as 
others may! Again, after many more years of brilliant 
achievement, he was then engaged on the splendid " Lord 
Salisbury," when about to enter the studio he paused with 
his fingers on the handle of the door, and turning to me said, 
almost gruffly, " But what have I to show you that you will 
care to see ? I am only ' a portrait painter ! ' " Needless to 
say that the reply was, " My dear Millais, in painting such 
portraits you are painting history! " These incidents, trivial 
as they seem, may not be unworthy of record, as revela 
tions of the more inward workings of the great master's mind, 
even at the height of his greatness. 

Another and still later indication of Millais' habit of self- 
criticism I may note on the - authority of one to whom the 
incident was related by himself. Shortly after the opening 
of the exhibition of his collected works at the Grosvenor 
Galleries, wishing to look at the collection undisturbed, he 
had gone there alone, at an hour when he had reason to 
expect that no visitors would be present. He found only 
some three or four lingerers in the Galleries, and these evi 
dently did^ not recognise him. After looking round him for 
a little while, his sense of the superiority of the earlier works 
carried out under many grave difficulties, and when all the 


world seemed against him over those done when in affluence 
and with all the world at his feet, became so oppressive, that 
he felt that he must choke if he remained. So, rushing out 
of the place, he bought, at the first tobacconist's he came to, 
the biggest cigar he could find, and smoking it furiously on 
the way home, was comforted ! How like him all this ! And 
how vastly unlike the too frequent mode of looking at their 
own productions of lesser men ! But while of set purpose 
noting these more inward, and less generally recognised 
workings of Millais' mind, no one better knows than I what 
a life-long joy Art was to him, as the means of expressing 
his always exuberant delight in the beauty of Nature, animate 
and inanimate; first in its exquisitely minute, as later in its 
broader manifestations; or how thoroughly his manly and 
generous heart sympathised with and enjoyed life in all its 
phases. So that it has ever been and for the brief re 
mainder of my earthly sojourn must continue to be one of 
my most grateful and cherished reflections, that, despite his 
share of the anxieties and sorrows incident to humanity, the 
life-long friend, so sincerely loved and honoured, was essen 
tially a happy man. 


My first recollection of Millais was at a party at my 
father's house, when he and Holman Hunt were the centres 
of attraction. It must have been very early in the fifties, 
not later certainly than 1853, when I was eleven years old. 
As if it were yesterday 1 recollect the strong impression 
made upon my childish mind, which had, I suppose, already 
keen perception of beauty, by the curly-headed young man 
whose work I had already heard discussed ; and I recollect 
trying to get near to him, and then, as I ever did afterwards, 
admiring him with a kind of hero worship, which was more 
common five-and-forty years ago than it is now. 

At my father's house much discussion took place about 
the Pre-Raphaelite movement, in which he took a very lively 
interest, and was ever upon the side of that group of artists 
who did so much to remove the English school of painting 
from the commonplace. He often used to tell us, when we 
were children, various comments upon the Pre-Raphaelite 
movement which he heard in Society ; and I remember one 


occasion (where the discussion took place I do not know, but 
it was evidently animated, and there were two opposing sides) 
he was appealed to as a kind of centre as to the merit of the 
then young Millais. As far as I can recollect his verdict, it 
was this : " Millais is already famous; you are adding to his 
fame by your discussion as to the existence or non-existence 
of his merits. You are only adding to a reputation already 
discovered by any praise or blame." 

I remember the keen admiration with which I and my 
friends regarded everything that came from Millais' brush, 
and the almost worship with which we regarded his pictures. 
Fred Walker, Albert Moore, Simeon Solomon, Henry 
Halliday and I fed our young minds upon such pictures 
as " The Return of the Dove to the Ark," of which I re 
member my father saying, " It is the most poetic picture 
exhibited in the Academy in my recollection," and indeed 
the centres of interest at the Royal Academy Exhibition 
year by year were -the places where Millais' pictures hung. 
There were ardent discussions among us when Leighton 
appeared upon the scene, as to the relative merit of the work 
of the two brilliant young men. My friends were perhaps 
more faithful than I was to the Pre-Raphaelite. With, I 
suppose, a natural leaning towards eclectic Art and a sense 
of style, which Leighton's work presented, I found some 
thing congenial to my own taste that I missed in the more 
romantic spirit. As time went on, I think that we all were 
able to differentiate qualities which exist in the works of two 
of the most interesting painters of this century, and we 
learned not to compare them, but to admire them both. 

Millais was kindness itself to me as a boy. When I was 
a lad of sixteen I remember his coming to see me in my 
father's house to criticise the picture that I was then painting 
of " Enid and Geraint," and his taking the trouble to draw 
for me, in a book which I now have, a head of Geraint, 
which he advised me to substitute for the one which I had 
already painted, which was a portrait of Carlo Perugini, who 
became afterwards one of Millais' closest friends ; and I 
remember thinking that Millais' criticism was slightly para 
doxical in that he wished me to introduce into a picture an 
ideal system when I knew that all the heads in his earlier 
w r ork had been uncompromising portraiture. But that 
mixture, or infusion, of the real and the ideal became later 
on a strong feature in Millais' work. His sense of character 


and his appreciation of personality had always about it a 
wonderful evidence of a selective power. He saw the 
beauty that lay under character, and in that respect he was 
like a Greek. I apprehend that no member of the English 
school has ever had a finer feeling for form than was his, 
but his selection of it was never conscious. Under his 
discriminating eye the beauty of even common forms was 
evident. He touched nothing that he did not ennoble by an 

By per mission of Princess Dolgorouki 

artistic perception entirely innate, never reasoned. That is 
why, I suppose, his Art has moved the world, because at 
its best, as well as at its worst, it was always spontaneous. 

I have never known a better critic than he was, for two 
reasons. In the first place, he was entirely sympathetic; 
in the second, his marvellous accuracy of eye enabled him 
to drop upon a fault of proportion or incongruous design 
in a manner which in anybody else would have been called 
commonplace. United with a highly poetic instinct and a 
romantic spirit that I have often compared to that of 
Keats, Millais had an abundance of common-sense and a 


love of accuracy which might have injured his poetical 
faculty if that had not been in the first place pre-eminent 
His great success naturally made him impatient of criticism. 
A remarkable instance of that impatience I can give you. 

I met him not many years ago in Hyde Park looking as 
dejected as I felt. He sympathised with me upon the 
subject of the reception of a picture of mine, of which he 
spoke in kindly terms. He was suffering under the same 
smart, and with indignation he turned round to me, and 
bitterly said, "Why do we cast our pearls before swine? 
The best we give to the English public they abuse; the 
vulgarest they accept and applaud." This, of course, was 
a mood, because Millais had a high regard for public opinion, 
and he believed, as many of us do not believe, that public 
opinion in the matter of Art is right. In earlier years, 
as far as I remember his opinions to have been, he did 
not very highly estimate the old masters, excepting, perhaps, 
Holbein; but as years went on his admiration for Titian 
and Vandyck grew to be almost adulation. Perhaps, as 
compared to Leighton's and some others, his artistic sym 
pathies were somewhat narrow. I do not think that design, 
qua design, which had not in it some human interest, had 
much to say to him, and I imagine, or rather I gathered 
from his conversation, that his admiration for Greek Art 
was more cultivated than spontaneous. While he was a 
poet he was also a novelist; people interested him more 
than things. Even in his landscapes I think I can always 
detect a kind of human sentiment pervading them, a mood of 
Nature akin to a human mood which had prompted the 
initiation of his vision. He was a great story-teller; his 
Art is extremely dramatic ; he arrived at the roots of the 
sentiment that was prompting the actors of his drama with 
whom he became, as a great novelist does, intimately 
acquainted. Millais' literary sympathies were with Scott, 
Thackeray, and Dickens, and lastly Louis Stevenson. He 
loved anecdote and story as well as the literary embodiment 
of character; but I question if philosophical problem had 
much place in a mind that was essentially modern. It 
was in no sense retrospective intellect; it cared for the 
things that moved around it, and lived in the life of its own 
time. His illustrations to the poets could have been painted 
in no other century but this, and could have been done 
only by Millais. Keats's poem, " St. Agnes' Eve," he made 

By permission of Mr. Frederick Phillips 


his own. The picture is not an illustration of Keats's 
poem ; it is an interpretation of Millais', conceived entirely 
in the spirit of the nineteenth century. It has none of 
the mediaeval qualities. What seems to have attracted 
him in the poem has been the moonlight, and that with 
an unrivalled painter's gift he presented to the world, as 
I venture to think no painter ever presented it before. 
He is therefore, in this instance, not so much an illustrator 
as an originator; and I think this criticism might be said 
to be true to his Art throughout. Precedent had no charm 
for him ; his vision was a painter's vision entirely his own. 
He never saw through the spectacles of others, and when 
he painted a souvenir of Velasquez it was Millais that 
was evident, not Velasquez; and when he reminded us 
of Gainsborough it was more upon account of the oval 
shape of the frames than of the artistic handling. I do 
not think that England has ever produced an artist more 
entirely individual, and one who has been, upon the whole, 
truer to his native instincts ; and my firm belief is that 
as long as the memory of English Art exists the name 
of Millais will go down to posterity as among her truest 
and most individual exponents. 


As a boy I had a great admiration for Millais' work, but 
had not the pleasure of being introduced to him until we met 
at a dinner given by the late Mr. Macdonald, of Kepplestone, 
at a hotel in Jermyn Street. Faed, Wells, Pettie, Charles 
Keene, and two or three more were present. Some days 
later to be precise, on Tuesday, June i3th, 1876 Mr. 
Macdonald, Keene, and I lunched at 7 Cromwell Place. 
Keene arrived late, luncheon being half over when he was 
announced. He had on a long, light overcoat, white hat, 
and white gaiters, and was hung round with satchel, sketching 
stools, etc. a long, lank, odd figure. He had evidently been 
in the country sketching. Millais jumped up from table and 
greeted him with "Come along, old cocky-wax." In the 
studio the portraits of the two Miss Hoares and that won* 
derful tour-de-force, "The Yeoman of the Guard," were in 

* These notes, I must explain, are merely an epitome of a letter from Sir 
George Reid addressed to myself. J. G. M. 


I think I next met Millais in Aberdeen in October, 1880. 
He was on a visit to Mr. Macdonald, at Kepplestone. He 
(Macdonald) was very anxious to have a sketch of Millais' 
head, and asked him to sit. He agreed, and on two morn 
ings (Wednesday, 2Oth, and Thursday, 2ist) came to St. 
Luke's, where he smoked his after-breakfast pipe, and on the 
second occasion the sketch was finished. Hunting about the 
studio, an old frame was found, the sketch was placed in it, 
and Millais himself carried it across to Kepplestone and put 
it on a chair in the entrance-hall, to greet Mr. Macdonald on 
his return from town in the afternoon. This was how the 
Kepplestone collection of artists' portraits was begun. . . . 

He came to us in Edinburgh on Saturday, October 27th, 
1894, and remained till Tuesday, 3oth. He had been visiting 
at Gosford and Yester, and complained of the late hours, 
especially of the late dinners. 

The first evening we dined alone, and he went off to bed 
about nine o'clock. Next day (Sunday) he wished to go to 
St. Giles, to morning service, but was far from well, and 
remained in the house all day. The whole afternoon was 
spent in pleasant chat. His mind was then full of the idea 
of painting a large picture of St. Christopher. He spoke of 
treating the subject in a way different from that usual with 
the old masters, and of making the beautiful child, and not 
the brawny saint, the great point of interest in the picture e 
He said he knew of a splendid bit of background somewhere 
on the Tay'near Stobhall. This led to some talk about the 
legend of St. Christopher, and I took down Mrs. Jameson's 
Sacred and Legendary Art, and read it aloud. When I came 
to the sentence, " So the thing that he did pleased our Lord, 
who looked down upon him out of heaven, and said within 
Himself, c Behold this strong man, who knoweth not yet the 
way to worship Me, yet hath found the way to serve Me ! J " 
he eagerly exclaimed, " That is for the Academy Catalogue ! " 
and copied out the passage. 

In the absence of Sir Frederick Leighton, Millais presided 
at the Royal Academy dinner on Saturday, May 4th, 1895. 
While the guests were arriving I was in one of the first 
rooms looking at his picture of "St. Stephen," when he 
came to me, evidently in a very nervous state, and putting 
his hand to his throat said, " What am I to do? I have no 
voice." He went off to shake hands with the guests who 
were arriving, and a few minutes later I saw him patting 



Lord Rosebery on the back, and the thought crossed my 
mind how many artists would have ventured to pat a Prime 
Minister of England on the back ? 

When he first rose to speak his voice was all but inaudible, 
but as the evening wore on it improved; and his last speech, 
so hearty, so genuine, so characteristic of the man, was heard 
every word of it. 

Lady Reid and I dined at Palace Gate next evening. He 
was in great spirits, evidently glad that the dinner was over, 
and that all had gone off so well; but Lady Millais gave 
a different account of his feelings for weeks before, when she 
told my wife of his pacing up and down trying to piece 
together his speeches, and committing scraps of them to 
memory. The climax was reached on the afternoon of 
Saturday, the 4th, when the time came for him to go to 
Burlington House, and he declared that he had "a good 
mind to go and hang himself." I told this story to Lord 
Rosebery, when he remarked, " Ah ! that was the true 
orator!" He even volunteered to come North and make 
a speech at the next Royal Scottish Academy dinner. 

On November 27th he was in Edinburgh, on his way 
South, and I went with him to call on his old friend Sir 
Noel Paton. He seemed much disappointed not to see him. 
Next morning my wife and I saw him off to London by the 
ten o'clock train, accompanied by Lady Millais. We both 
thought him looking very ill, very much changed his face 
worn, and the hearty, buoyant look gone. This was the last 
time I ever saw him. I had a note from him some time 
in February or March saying that I might be surprised at 
his having accepted the Presidency of the Royal Academy 
after what he had said, but that circumstances had left him 
no choice. Then came reports of his illness, which I only 
heard of through the newspapers (I being abroad at the 
time), and on the I7th July a most pathetic and beautiful 
note of farewell, written in pencil in an almost illegible hand. 
Twenty-seven clays after that he passed away one of the 
kindest, noblest, most beautiful and lovable men I ever 
knew, or ever hope to know. My wife says, " He was 
all that, and a great deal more." 


1 20 


BY H. W. B. DAVIS, R. A. 

You have asked me for my opinion in general of Millais' 
power as a landscape painter, as well as for some remarks 
in particular of his picture of " The Blind Girl," possibly 
from having heard me speak on some occasion with en 
thusiasm of that wonderful little work looked at from a 
landscape painter's point of view. 

The picture is, indeed, to my mind, a marvel among 
pictures even among Millais', considering at what an early 
stage in his career it was produced for, putting aside for 
the moment the main subject of the picture its great 
pathos, its remarkable realistic drawing, and the vigour of 
painting and colour in the figures and looking upon the 
work in the sense of a landscape alone, it is, with its power 
and brilliancy as such, simply astonishing. A piece of great 
landscape painting is there, though on a scale so small that 
the hand might suffice to cover the surface of the whole 
background, and replete with detail of extraordinary minute 
ness ; one of his few, too, dealing with a transient effect of 

The sun shines out, after the rain, in all its lustre upon 
the green grass and wet landscape, and brightens the trees, 
the buildings, and all the details of the background with a 
vividness, a freshness, and a reality that are amazing. 

What an effect its appearance must have had upon the 
Art world of the day what a revelation to earnest students 
of out-door Nature ! I recollect its exhibition at the Royal 
Academy, though too inexperienced at the time to appreciate 
its dazzling merits. It did have its effect, for I was not 
so young that I did not perceive its immediate influence 
upon landscape painting particularly in inculcating a more 
searching study of, a constant reference to, Nature herself 
for her facts, and a truer reverence for them, and refusing 
to be satisfied with the mere superficial cleverness and 
artificiality too prevalent at the time. 

In this connection I mean of his close study of Nature, 
and its effect upon contemporaneous landscape Art I ought 
to allude to his earlier work, the " Ophelia " (which had 
already raised much discussion), for the keen observation 
and uncompromising rendering of Nature's facts displayed 


in the picture. The very individual character of his subject 
that, and no other that is so remarkable in his portraits 
and figures, is to be seen here in every bit of foliage, every 
flower, water-herb, and weed. Look but at the group of 
flags, and the liquidity of the water around them at the 
weeds emerging from the water in their front, at the fore 
shortened twigs and branches of the willow and remember 
that these were painted before the time when photography 
had been essayed upon landscape objects, and had familiarised 
us with their accurate delineation. 

Had such facts ever been so observed and so rendered 
before ? 

In these two works of Millais, as, indeed, in all his subse 
quent landscapes, they are as much pieces of characteristic 
portraiture as are the subjects he has painted from living 
models. They were painted, too, with an evident ease ; there 
is no sign whatever of over-labour, or failure, there is no , 
hardness or over-insistence of outline in any, his most in 
tricate, details, such as would be seen in work of attempted 
similar character by an inferior hand, and was, indeed, but 
too painfully obtrusive in the works of his immediate 
imitators and followers. 

All the mystery and delicacy of Nature her losing and 
finding of contour her look of accident in her very minutest 
details, are manifest in these works. Examine the garden 
with its rows of fruit-trees, and gravel path, and little figure 
in the background of the " The Blind Girl." 

It was good to go from this small picture, in the late 
exhibition of his work at the Academy, to look upon, say, 
the " Miss Lehmann " portrait, with its broad, free, and 
masterly treatment, the charm of its delicate colour scheme, 
its girlish grace and character, and absolute vitality, for an 
appreciation of Millais' great gifts. 

Is it surprising that with such preparation, such constant 
and strenuous effort in his early work and study, he was able 
to achieve so much freedom and power in his later produc 
tions ? 

Why, what a lesson is his career to ambitious tyros of the 
present day, so anxious, some of them, to pose as masters 
before they know what mastery means, and who hope to be 
accepted as such in the eyes of the unwary, by affecting a 
power they in no sense possess; covering, as they ^ too 
frequently do, with rough and ready, but bald and meaning- 


less, sweeps of the brush, their crude and empty canvases. 
The master's touch, his sweep of brush, is not to be acquired 
at the commencement of a student's career. 

Mastery, even of brushwork alone, can only come of know 
ledge and much practice ; and the beginner may rest assured 
that the powerful technique of a Constable or a David Cox 
not to speak of Turner was only arrived at by unremitting 
and reverent study of Nature, and after a vast and varied 

It must be admitted that it is chiefly for their matchless 
qualities of realism as absolute transcripts of Nature that 
Millais' landscapes are to be judged ; and not, indeed, as 
compositions or impressions of great phases or effects of 
Nature ; and it is to this intense realism of his landscape Art 
that I would draw attention : it is such that he makes you 
feel, as you look upon his work, to be actually on the spot 
able almost to walk into the scene to be breathing its very 
air ; and I am not sure but what most of his great qualities 
as an Artist, as painter particularly, are seen to advantage in 
his landscapes. His rare grasp of character, so evident in 
his masterpieces of portraiture, unsurpassed, and unsur 
passable as are some few of them ; his terse and vigorous 
drawing ; his unerring eye for colour I mean for correctness 
of colour and tint values in Nature even his great dramatic 
power, are as conspicuous in his landscapes as in his other 
more familiar and popular works. He holds in landscape 
art, indeed, a position that is quite unique. His was a new 
conception of that Art. Nothing quite like it had ever been 
attempted before, certainly no attempt had ever been 
so realised : and I am acquainted with nothing in the whole 
range of landscape art, old or modern, (and I am tolerably 
familiar with all that has been done of note in that art either 
at home or abroad), that at all approaches his work in certain 
qualities that are quite his own. At all events, in these 
qualities of the landscape painter, Millais' position, as I have 
said, is unique ; that is, from his own, the absolutely sincere 
and realistic point of view. These qualities that he possessed 
in so rare and so marked a degree, are the mastery over the 
ever-recurring problems in painters' work as a craft, which the 
painter is ever endeavouring to solve, and which would appear 
to have offered no difficulty whatever to that highly-gifted 
man. His acute sense of colour I prefer to say correct 
ness of tint never seemed to fail him: the resources of 



palette were ever ready at his command. He could not, 
it would seem, see tint, however subtle, incorrectly, or be 
at a loss to represent it on canvas ; and this power, which 
he had, no doubt, cultivated to the utmost (the colour gift 
itself is innate) by his early close study and painting of flesh 
see, for an example, the consummate painting of the sleep 
ing child's bare legs in " The Order of Release " is particu 
larly evident in his landscapes ; the more noticeable in them, 

By -permission of Lord Manners 

possibly, because we are so little accustomed to see remark 
able power of that character In landscape painting. 

I am speaking", as will have been surmised, more particu 
larly of so-called"" aerial perspective," the true perception and 
expression of which is, after all, but the power of seeing and 
rendering the infinite subtleties of Nature's tints and values 
with absolute accuracy. In this, as I have said, Millais 5 
power was unfailing. 

The well-known" aerial perspective of Hobbema, striking 
as it is, seems nowhere in comparison with the ^ gift of 
Millais, who, moreover, was master of other qualities to 


which the great Dutch painter could make no pretension. 
Nor could Millais have felt any of the ordinary difficulties 
of these problems of painting; or how account for the 
manifest ease and rapidity with which he must have painted 
those vivid transcripts of pure Nature, a couple of which 
it was not unusual for him to produce in an autumn, or part 
of winter? I think it is the remarkable ease with which 
he apparently overcame these difficulties of the Art, in 
surmountable as they usually are to the ordinary craftsman, 
honestly strive though he may to master them, that so appeals 
to the admiration and wonder of artists. It would take 
an ordinary painter of ability many months, I should think, 
to even attempt to give or to suggest all that Millais has 
shown in such a foreground as that of " Over the Hills 
and Far Away." The air itself seems between and around 
the dried grasses, patches of heather, and pools of water, 
which it is just stirring, so that you may fancy you hear 
the bentles rustle, and see them move. The technique, 
too, is quite his own bears no sort of resemblance to that 
of any previous Art; the presence of pigment never 
obtrudes; you altogether lose the sense of paint and 
painting when looking at his matchless foregrounds, and, 
if possible, more wondrous middle distances. I say more 
wondrous, because I think it will be generally conceded 
that the effective painting of objects in middle distance 
is, next to that of the sky, what most tests the capacity 
of the landscape painter proper. 

The intricacies infinite of Nature seem to have had 
a special charm for him ; such intricacy of detail, or sug 
gested detail, as other and less gifted men would hardly 
dare to face or venture to attack, he achieved, and with a 
success, in his own manner, that has never been attained 
by any other hand. Turner, of course, in his mighty and 
majestic way, was supreme in the suggestion of the grand 
and manifold intricacies of Nature; but Turner stands 
alone on his pinnacle of glory, and comparison between him 
and other painters is vain. Yet Millais' art is distinct from 
all others in its vivid and sincere realism of intricate detail. 

I have said that his conception of landscape Art was his 
own. The pure face of Nature sweet, dearest Nature, the 
endless simple, unaffected charms of her every phase, that 
anyone may see and enjoy, who but seeks for and can 
appreciate them sufficed him. The mere actual beauty of 

By permission of Mrs. Cameron 


the scene before him, under some certain aspect of season 
time of day, or weather, was all to him. Air, space, freedom, 
sunshine, lowering clouds, calm, wind, heat, cold, the freshness 
and coolness of evening particularly; the distant, impalpable 
sky, of exquisite tender grey frequently, the exact, delicately 
varied grey of Nature ; sometimes, not often, the blue itself 

limitless when he did paint it; the very tints of evening 
sky: these, the simple beauties of Nature, unencumbered! 
unalloyed, uncontaminated, as he possibly thought, by any 
mere human mood of the moment in the painter's mind, were 
what he sought, in all sincerity, to express. 

This passionate love of sincerity was in his very soul was 

of the essence of the character of the man as of his art ; and 
he could forgive no departure from this sincerity of purpose,, 
no deviation from this strict path of rectitude, as he consid 
ered, in any work of Art. 

I say these effects in natural landscape which he realised 
so consummately, appeared all-sufficient to him ; for he never 

or but rarely seems to have been lured away from them 
by other and (as some may think) grander conceptions of 
landscape Art composition; impression of the scene as a 
whole; passing and fleeting effects, often so impressive, and 
the cause, perhaps, of what we may be most moved by in 
Nature. Such moods as these he apparently passed over; 
but who can say, that looks upon his matchless rendering of 
them, that his own conception of Nature's charms was not 
sufficient? Who can look unmoved upon such works as 
" Over the Hills and Far Away," " The Fringe of the Moor," 
the wonderful winter scene, "Blow, Blow, Thou Winter 
Wind," his first, and yet one of his great triumphs in pure 
landscape, " Chill October," the tints on the snow in the " Old 
Castle" picture with the shiny blue-black rooks, the sky 
beyond the roof of the castle in the "Old Garden," and, 
indeed, each and all of his landscapes? for I do not recollect 
one that is without his signal qualities, though the works may 
vary in their amount of interest in other respects. Can any 
one, for example, with any knowledge of faculty for observa 
tion of Nature, look upon " The Vale of Rest " without, in 
fancy^ absolutely feeling the very air of approaching twilight ? 
This is, indeed, to my mind, a faultless picture, and the one I 
should possibly select difficult and invidious as such a 
choice would be if compelled to indicate one work that 
should be most representative of the painter's varied powers. 


Of this picture, indeed, I dare hardly truct myself to speak, 
so great is my admiration for that noble work ; viewing it in 
every respect, though chiefly as a landscape, and expression 
of the hour after sundown. 

I might almost say the same of " Autumn Leaves," another 
marvel of twilight effect. The richness and truth of the 
colouring in this latter work is most striking. It is the 
hour of day, indeed, when so-called " local colour " of objects 
in the quiet, steady light, undisturbed by any play of sun 
shine and shadow, is most vivid and intense. In both these 
pictures there is the essence of the chosen time of day. But 
it is " The Vale of Rest" which most excites my enthusiasm, 
as it is, properly, the greater effort of the two. Passing 
from the figures (and how fine they are ! especially the nun 
throwing the spadeful of earth) to the treatment of the land 
scape, look but at the colour of the various greens, so exactly 
right in their tone and freshness ; at the silhouette of the 
trees, and their colour against the sky ; the sky itself, well 
away from all, and exactly true in tint; the space in the 
picture so extraordinarily expressed that air is everywhere 
felt to be between one object and another; and, withal, 
the solemn, calm note of the whole. What a wondrous 
work of realistic truth is here! He was, when he painted 
it, no doubt beginning to feel his power, and to work with 
a greater freedom and confidence ; and it is, perhaps, 
the transition state of his art, foreshadowed in his picture, 
that adds zest and a charm to the work in the eyes of a 

And what significant forerunners were such works as these 
of his freer and bolder landscapes later on in his career. 

H. W. B. DAVIS. 

The following lines by the Poet Laureate may fitly con 
clude these volumes : 


" Now let no passing-bell be tolled, 

Wail now no dirge of gloom, 
Nor around purple pall unfold 

The trappings of the tomb ! 
Dead? No ; the Artist doth not die ; 
Enduring as the air, the sky, 
He lets the mortal years roll by, 

Indifferent to their doom. 


" With the abiding he abides, 

Eternally the same ; 
From shore to shore Time's sounding tides 

Roll and repeat his name. 
Death, the kind pilot, from his home, 
But speeds him unto widening foam, 
Then leaves him, sunk from sight, to roam 

The ocean of his fame. 

" Nor thus himself alone he lives, 

But, by the magic known 
To his ' so potent art,' he gives 

Life lasting as his own. 
See, on the canvas, foiling Fate, 
With kindling gaze and flashing gait, 
Dead Statesmen still defend the State, 

And vindicate the Throne. 

" Stayed by his hand, the loved, the lost, 

Still keep their wonted place ; 
And, fondly fooled, our hearts accost 

The vanished form and face. 
Beauty, most frail of earthly shows, 
That fades as fleetly as it blows, 
By him arrested, gleams and glows 

With never-waning grace. 

" His, too, the wizard power to bring, 

When city-pent we be, 
Slow-mellowing Autumn, maiden Spring, 

Bracken and birchen tree. 
Look ! 'twixt gray boulders fringed with fern, 
The tawny torrents chafe and churn, 
And, lined with light, the amber burn 

Goes bounding to the sea. 

" Toll then for him no funeral knell, 

Nor around aisle and nave 
Let Sorrow's farewell anthem swell, 

Nor solemn symbols wave. 
Your very brighest banners bring, 
Your gayest flowers. Sing, voices, sing ! 
And let Fame's lofty joybells ring 
Their greeting at his grave. 



Bock-plate etched by Millais for the Lineage and Pedigree of tki 
Family of Millais, 1865 


Member of the Institute of France, of the Academies of 
Antwerp, Vienna, St. Luke's, Rome, and San Fernando, Madrid; 
Honorary Member of the Academies of Belgium, Scotland, and 
Ireland ; and Officer of the Legion of Honour. 

1829. Born June 8th, at Southampton. 

1838. Won silver medal of the Society of Arts. 

1840. Admitted student of the Royal Academy Schools. 

1845. Gold medal for painting. 

1846. Exhibited his first picture at the Royal Academy ("Pizarro"). 

1847. Took part in the Westminster Hall Competition ("The 

Widow's Mite"). 

1848. The Prc-Raphaelites join with others in founding the Pre- 

Raphaelite Brotherhood. 
1853. Associate of the Royal Academy. 
1855. Married Euphcmia Chalmers, daughter of George Gray, 

Esq., of Bowerswell, Perth. 
1863. Royal Academician. 
1871. In conjunction with Phillip Hard wick he founded the 

Artists' Benevolent Institution. 

1878. Mcidaillc d'Honncur, Paris International Exhibition. 
" Officer of the Legion of Honour. 

1880. D.C.L., Oxford. 

11 Exhibition of collected works, Fine Art Society. 

1 88 1. Trustee of the National Portrait Gallery. 

1882. Pour le Meritc. The highest civil order of Germany.* 
" Foreign associate, Academic des Beaux Arts. 

" Grand Officicr du Legion d'Honneur. 

1885. Baronet. 

1886. Exhibitions of collected works, Grosvenor Gallery. 

1887. Gold medal, Berlin Art Exhibition. 
1893. D.C.L., Durham. 

1895. Officer of the Order of Leopold. 

* The German order " Pour le Merite " was founded by Frederick the Great as the 
highest distinction for military service. Its statute was revised in 1842, in order to 
include scientists and artists. The latter class is limited to a membership of thirty 
Germans and thirty foreigners. 



1896. President of the Royal Academy (with other appointment 

ex ojftcid). 
Order of St. Moritz and St. Lazerus (from the King of 

Died August I3th. Buried in St. Paul's Cathedral August 


1898. Exhibition of collected works, Royal Academy. 


(Compiled from the Lineage and Pedigree of the Family ofMillais, 
by I. Bertrand Payne, 1865.) 

The family of Millais, originally from Normandy, settled in the 
island of Jersey. " Les Monts Millais," a bold range of hills to 
the north-east of the town of St. Helier, and the " Cueillette de 
Millais," in the parish of St. Ouen, seem to prove that in early 
times its members were among the most notable residents in the 

Evidences exist showing that Geoffray Millayes held his lands 
under the Crown in 1331, and John Millays, presumably his son, 
paid tax to the Prior of St. Clements in 1381. The family and 
name, spelt also as Milles, Mylays, and Milays, is traced from this 
period by the tenure of property and their intermarriage with 
several of the principal families in Jersey, from whom are derived 
many notable houses and personages connected with the military 
and civil history of this country. 

JOHN MYLAYS m., about 1540, Perinne, sole daughter and heiress 
of the Le Jarderai family, and thus became possessed of the estate 
of Tapon, which remained in the family for nearly three centuries. 
Their eldest son, 

JOHN MlLAYS, was b. 1542, and had by Catherine Falle, his wife, 
amongst other children, 

JOHN MYLAIS, who m. Elizabeth Poingdestre, and had issue 

JOHN MILAYS, who m., first, Mary, daughter of John Bisson; 
and, secondly, Jane, daughter and heiress of Benjamin Bertram, and 
had, with other issue, 

EDWARD MILLAYS, who was also twice married. First, in 1671, 
to Margeret, daughter and eventual heir of the Rev. Joshua Pallet, 
by whom he had issue, Edward, of whom hereafter. He m., secondly, 
Judith, daughter and eventual heir of Annice de Carteret, who d. 
s.f. The brother of this Edward Millays (John) is recorded as tenant 
of the Crown in Gronville and St. Clement in 1668. 

EDWARD MiLLES, the son, 6. 1672; m. t 1696, Mary, daughter of 
John Mourant, and was succeeded by his second and surviving son, 



EDWARD MILLATS, b. 1710; m., 1728, Rachel le Geyt, an heiress, 
and had issue three sons and five daughters. Of the latter, Mary, 
who m. Rev. John Dupre, rector of St. Heliers and commissary of 
the Bishop of Winchester, was mother of Edward Dupre, D.C.L., 
Dean of Jersey, and grandmother of John William Dupre, Attorney- 
General of that island. Of the three sons, 

EDWARD MILLAIS, b. 1729; m., 1752, Elizabeth, daughter of 
Edward Falle, and had, amongst other issue, 

EDWARD MILLAIS, Capt. R.T.M., b. 1769, who m. Sarah Mary, 
daughter of William Matthews, and had, amongst other issue, 

JOHN WILLIAM MILLAIS (second son), m. Mary, daughter of 
Richard Evamey, Esq., and widow of Enoch Hodgkinson, Esq., and 
d. in 1869, having had issue, 

I. William Henry (Ward Hill, Farnham, Surrey), b. 1828; m., 
first, i860, Judith Agnes, daughter of Rev. (Preb.) Charles Booth by, 
son of Sir William Boothby, Bart., by whom (who d. 6th April, 
1862) he had issue one daughter. He ?;/., secondly, 7th June, 
1866, Adelaide Jane, youngest daughter of John Farquhar Eraser, 
Esq. (county court judge), by whom he had issue one son and 
three daughters. 

II. JOHN EVERETT, created a Baronet i6th July, 1885. 

I. Emily Mary, in. John Johnson- Wallack of New York. 

II. Ellen Amelia ) ,., 7 , r ^ t ,,,rr 
TTT TUT TM* i ^i " both a. young. 

III. Mary Elizabeth y b 

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f. 1839 

j H. R. Lempriere 


1 Esq. 



William Millais. 




( H. R. Lempriere 


i Esq. ^ 



Geoffrey Millais. 

( Sketch for Child in u Grand- 



J. H. Standen, Esq 

< father and Child." Theori- 

( ginalis now Mrs. Standen. 


r. 1S51 

Miss ALICE GRAY . . 


George Gray, Esq. 

( Bust. Pencil and water- 
( colour. 



George Gray, Esq. 

Pencil and water-colour. 


GEORGE GRAY (after- > 
wards Lady Millais) ; 


George Gray, Esq. 

Size 10 X Si- 





j The Marquess of 

Size 5-i X 7. 


| Ripon, K.G. 



George Gray, Esq. 

( Size 9X7. Chalk and 
\ water-colour. 



J National Portrait 

I Gallery. 




William Millais. 





Fine Art Society. 




George Gray, Esq. 

Size 8 X 7-i. 




Sketch for oil picture. 






Mr. Colls. 

No title given. 



Mr. Watson. 



Mr. Watson. 



Mr. Colls. 




















G.D.Stibbard, Esq. 




W. Quilter, Esq. 



W. Quilter, Esq. 



No title. 










WILL HE COME? . . . 


Mr. Baker. 



Sir John Fowler. 




No title. 








Lady Lindsay. 

Size 9-JX9. 


( This is the largest water- 


< colour Millais ever did. 

THE WIFE . . . 

C. Fairfax Murray 

( Highly finished. 

A GIRL SERVING (a book ) 
illustration) [ 

C. Fairfax Murray. 

r or Once a, Vlfeck. 
For Once a Week. 



\ Miss E. Delves, 
) Brompton. 
j Humphrey Roberts, 
1 Esq. 

j Size 9X7. In fancy dress. 
1 Full length. 

Size 41 X 3f . 



G. D. Stibbard, Esq. 

Size 6J X 5 J. 


Mrs. Creyke. 

( Sketch for Once a Week. 
\ Size 5x4. 



Mrs. Creyke. 

( Humphrey Roberts, 
I Esq. 

j Sketch for Once a Week. 
\ Size 4f X 4. 







E. Dalziel, Esq. 



G. Dalziel, Esq. 


* T. 

Mn M. H. Spielmann kindly sends me the names of the following, 
of which I have no notes or information. Several of these are, how 
ever, sure to be included in the above list under water-colours 'of no 

THE GIPSY (with baby) 















MOST of the drawings done by Millais during his childhood and 
youth are now in the possession of the family. Many are, 
however, not applicable to successful reproduction, so they have not 
been figured in these volumes. The artist made elaborate drawings 
for many of his more important Pre-Raphaelite works, but the resting- 
place of but few are known. 

_ It was in 1859 that the artist seriously commenced book-illustra 
tion, and from this year to 1864 he did an immense number of 
pictures for books and periodicals. Notable amongst these were 
eighty-seven drawings which he executed for Anthony Trollope's 
novels, Orley Farm, Framlcy Parsonage, The Small House at Ailing- 
ton, Rachael Ray, and Phineas Finn. 

After 1864 he only occasionally made studies for his pictures, 
whilst in illustration he rarely employed his pen and pencil, except 
to oblige some personal friend. Not being in a position to trace and 
name the drawings that were delivered to publishers between 1859- 
1864, I have merely inserted dates of delivery of work, giving names 
where it is possible. Nearly the whole of these drawings having 
been worked direct in the wood blocks were destroyed in process of 







J. G. Millais. 

Pen and ink. 



William Millais. 




J. G, Millais. 

Line in sepia ink. 


(Won the Society of Arts 


William Millais. 





J. G. Millais. 




Geoffroy Millais. 

Pen and ink. 



William Millais. 




Geoffroy Millais. 

Pen and ink. 



General A. Lempriere. 




Geoffroy Millais. 

Pen and ink. 



Fairfax Murray. 


(study for " Lorenzo and > 


J. G. Millais. 

Indian ink and pencil. 

Isabella " ; highly finished ) 

* At this time Millais frequently visited the Tower of London with his mother. There he made drawings 
of English armour from its earliest to its latest stage. In the book above mentioned are some twenty pages of 
carefully executed pen-and-ink drawings. They are not, however, interesting from the artistic point of view, 
except to show how thorough was the youthful artist's self-tuition. The cover is both artistic and of careful 









J. G. Millais. 

Pen and ink and pencil. 


TER'S SHOP (parts of fig- > 


J. G. Millais. 

Indian ink and pencil. 

ures highly finished) . . ) 

(highly finished) 


G. W. Millais. 

Indian ink and pencil. 



J. G. Millais. 

Pen and ink. 



Mrs. Stibbard. 

Pen and ink and wash. 


ROMEO AND JULIET (the last [ 
scene) J 


John R. Clayton, Esq. 

Pen and pencil. 



Sir J. E. Millais. 



THE DELUGE (highly fin- > 


J. G. Millais. 

Pen and ink and pencil. 

ished) ) 



George Gray. 

Pen and ink and sepia. 



J. H. Pollen, Esq. 

Pencil and pen and ink. 



finished). An incident re- i- 


Mrs. Brockbank. 

Indian ink. 

lated in Miss Strickland's 

Queens of England) j 



Fairfax Murray, Esq. 

OPHKLIA (study for the head) 


Fairfax Murray, Esq. 



William Reed, Esq. 

( Pen and ink washed with 
\ colour. 





Henry Silver, Esq. 

Pen and ink. 


MILLAIS (drawn by himself) . 


M. H. Spielmann,Esq. 
Sir J. E. Millais. 

Pen and ink. 
Sepia wash. 

ACCEPTED ........ 


George Gray, Esq. 

Pen and ink, 



George Gray, Esq. 

Pen and ink. 




George Gray, Esq. 

Line and wash. 




George Gray, Esq. 

Line and wash. 



George Gray, Esq. 

Line and wash. 



George Gray, Esq. 

Line and wash. 



George Gray ESQ. 

Line and wash 



George Gray, Esq. 

Line and wash. 



George Gray, Esq. 

Line and wash. 



Mrs. Stuart- Wortley. 




George Gray, Esc. 

j Pen and ink washed with 

| colour. 

* A highly finished drawing done for the Cyclographic Club, 
in a large work, in oils, altering the design only slightly. 

The artist afterwards carried out this picture 


During his first residence in the North, in 1853, Millais illustrated 
two books with highly finished drawings and sketches ; many of them 
arc comic. The following being the best are illustrated in this work. 
They belong conjointly to the author and his brother Geoffrey. 

A Fishing Tarty on Loch Achray. 

A \Vct Day's Pastime (containing portraits 

of the artist, his brother William, and Sir 

Thomas A eland). 
The I Jest Day's Sketching. 
The Kirk in Glen Finlass. 
Sir Thomas Acland. 
Sir James Simpson. 
Imitations of Vandyck. 

Tourists at the Inn. 
Designs for Gothic Windows. 
Enter Lord and Lady Ficldledidee. 

The Tourists' Highland Reel. 

Sketch of the artist feeling sides of his room. 

Sir Thomas Acland assisting a certain lady 
to complete one of her large religious 

A certain lady has large views on the sub 
ject of Art. 

A Pretty Girl. 

Bruce at the Siege of Acre. 

Lord James Douglas provides for the Royal 

Death of Lord James Douglas. 

Bruce and the Spider. 

Black Agnes dusting D unbar Castle. 


Many of the sketches that Millais made for his pictures between 
these years were carefully preserved in a large volume by the artist's 
wife. This book now belongs to the author and his brother Geoffroy. 
The following sketches and finished drawings being considered his 
best are reproduced in these volumes: 

The three original ideas for " L' Enfant du 


Sketch for " Emma Morland " (Tennyson). 
Three drawings of " Peace Concluded." 
Koswcll (an Irish wolf-hound). 
Sketches for the " Crusaders." 
The Crusader's Return. 
Head of Ruth. 

Various sketches (Tennyson illustrations). 
The Parables (four sketches). 
Kclward Gray. 
Study of a young girl looking away. 

Study of a Child slipping from its mother. 
Two first ideas for " The Royalist." 
Two first ideas for " The Order of Release." 
" Come unto Me, ye weary." 
First ideas for " The Huguenot." 
Pre-Raphaelite sketch. 
Two drawings for the Germ. 
Sketches for " Mariana." 
Sketch for " Ferdinand lured by Ariel/ 7 
Sketch for a story by Rossetti to have been 
published in the Germ. 


Two sets of line drawings in the possession of Col. Luard : 

(1) Eleven pen-and-ink drawings, illustrating a walking tour in the Highlands under 

taken by the artist and his friend Charles Collins during the autumn of 1854. 

(2) Five pen-and-ink drawings, representing a day's shooting in Argyle. Characters : 

the artist, John Luard, Michael Halliday, and their host. 








George Gray, Esq. 




George Gray, Esq. 





C. Fairfax Murray, 


Ed. of Tennyson) J 




George Gray, Esq. 
Virtue Tebbs, Esq. 

Indian ink. 



F. B. Barwell, Esq. 




Lady Edwards. 
Mrs. MacEwen. 

Wash and pencil. 

Hill, June 10th, 1870) 


Mrs. Perugini. 



piece to Game Birds and 
Shooting Sketches, by J. 


J. G. Millais, Esq. 


G. Millais) 


J. G. Millais, Esq. 

Line and wash. 

THE LAST TREK (frontisO 
piece to A Breath from the > 
Veldt, by J. G. Millais.) ) 



I. Micklethwaite, 

T. 0. Barlow, Esq., 

( Black and white (body 
( colour). 

j IllustrationtoW.Black's 
( novel, pen and ink). 


T. 0. Barlow, Esq., 

Indian ink. 


H. Virtue Tebbs. 

Pen and ink. 

( Sir William Bow- 

< T> 4. 


\ man, Bart. 


D. Bates, Esq. 



( T. 0. Barlow, Esq., 
1 R.A, 

Sepia and Indian ink. 


Francis Austen, Esq 
(Sir William Bow- 
{ man, Bart. 

Pen and ink. 


i T. 0. Barlow, Esq., 

< T> A 

Pen and ink with colour. 

| R. A. 

The following, without being in any way a complete list, shows 
something of Millais' black-and-white work for contemporary litera 
ture. Nearly all of these drawings were destroyed on the wood 


Jan. Twelve drawings for Tennyson. 
July 1. Two drawings for Dalziel Bros. 

Oct. 12. Further drawings for Tennyson, including " Dora," " Edward Gray/" 
" Locksley Hall," and the " Miller's Daughter." 


June 27. Three drawings on the wood for Dalziel Bros. 
Later Millais accepts a commission to do thirty drawings of the 
Parables of our Lord, for which he received 300. 



June He sold to Mr. Flint six Framley Parsonage drawings.* 

July 5. All the Orlcy Farm drawings were sent in.* 


Jan. Bradbury and Evans. Seven drawings. 

Dalziel. Three drawings for Mistress and Maid and one for Olaf. 

April 2. Smith and Elder. Drawing of " Irene Wood." 

" 8. Chapman and Hall. Eight drawings. 

June Dalziel. Six drawings for Good Words. 

" 29. Smith and Elder. One drawing, " Knight and Bishop." 

July 3. Bradbury and Evans. Twelve drawings. 

" 27. Cornhill Magazine " Black Gordon " and " Sir Tristram," " Woman nurs 
ing a Child." 

Aug. 2. London Society. One drawing. 

" 19. Smith and Elder. Four drawings for Small House at Allington. 

Oct. 9. Smith and Elder. Five drawings for Mistress and Maid. 

" 22, Macmillan. Robinson Crusoe. Two drawings. 

" 22. Sampson Low. Maggie Band. Two drawings. 

Nov. 3. Smith and Elder. Two drawings. Small House at Allington. 

" 27. Dalziel. " Thoughtful Girls." Four drawings. 

Dec. Drawing for the Illustrated London News. 

" IS. Bradbury and Evans. Nine drawings. 


Jan. 12. London Society. Four drawings. 

" 16. Dalziel Bros. Four drawings of " The Parables." 

" 17. Asked by Mark Lemon to illustrate a sensational novel. Refuses. 

Mar. 4. Smith and Elder. Four drawings. 

May 23. Bradbury and Evans. Six drawings. 

June 1. Smith and Elder. Two drawings. 

July 2. Smith and Elder. Drawings. 

" 18. " Iphis and Anaxarte." 

" 20. " Miss Eyre and Roswell " (Millais* dog). 

" 20. " Anglers of the Dove." Two drawings. 

" 20. " Queen Mary." 

" 28. " Everett Millais in a Swing." 

" 28. " Lovers." 

" 28. Mr. Sykes (a book-plate for). 

Sept. 9. Drawings for Mr. Colls : "The Parting of Ulysses," "Henrietta Maria," 
" The Crusader's Bride," " The White Cockade/' " Old Letters." 

" 30. No Name. A drawing for Wilkie Collins. 

Oct. 1. Hurst and Blackett. " Les Miserables," " Lost and Saved." 

" 13. Dalziel Bros. Four Parables. 

Nov. 18. Mr. Burnett. Various drawings. 

IS. Mr. Colls. Indian Girl, Effie and others. 

* Most of these drawings were executed in his chambers, 160 Piccadilly. For the backgrounds he took 
flying visits to the country. 




Jan. 1. Bradbury and Evans. Nine drawings. 

" 14. Dalziel. Arabian Nights. Two drawings. 

Feb. 18. Drawings for Good Words. 

Sept. 22. Chapman. Drawing of Rachel Ray. 

Oct. 6. Drawings for Smith and Elder. 

Nov. 14. A little Swiss Boy. 



Hurst and Blackett. Various drawings. 


May 26. Cassell and Co. Six drawings. 


Cassell, Fetter and Co. " Little Songs." Various drawings. 
Virtue and Co. Four drawings for St. PauVs. 
Virtue and Co. Five drawings for St. Paul's. 

Drawings for Anthony Trollope. 

Feb. 11. Virtue and Co. Six drawings. 

Messrs. Smith, Elder and Co. Barry Lyndon drawings. 

A drawing for Anthony Trollope for Good Words. 

No date. 
Illustrations to Wilkie Collins' No Name. 

Dec. 14. 



Millais, although not caring for this method of artistic expression, 
at various times practised the art. The first example known is that 
of an etching which was to have illustrated a story by D. G. Rossetti 
in the fifth or stillborn number of the Germ* Between the years 
1863-1865 he did several etchings, which cannot now be traced, 
whilst in the year 1865 it is certain that he joined an etching club. 
In that year, too, he etched his own coat of arms as a frontispiece to 
Mr. Payne's Lineage of the Millais Family. 

* Said to have been intended to illustrate a story by D. G. Rossetti called the " Inter 
cession of St. Agnes." 




Engravings in mezzotint or in the " mixed " manner (of mezzotint and etching combined) 
are entered in this list as mezzotints. 







F. A.Laguillermie 

Etching . . 

T. McLean .... 



T. O. Bartow, R.A. 


Henry Graves & Co. 



J. Dobie . . . 

Etching . . 

Magazine of Art 



T. O. Barlow, R.A. 


Henry Graves & Co. 





Fine Art Society . . 



T.O. Barlow, R.A. 


E. S. Palmer . . . 



C. Waltner . . . 

Etching . . 




1 T. L. Atkinson. 



Henry Graves & Co. 




Magazine of Art. 


BRIDE, THE .... 


Magazine of Art. 




1 T. O. Barlow, R.A. 


T. Agnew & Sons . 



T.O. Barlow, R.A. 
G. H. Every . . 


T. Agnew & Sons . 
Arthur Tooth Sons 





Fine Art Society . . 



G. H. Every . . 


Fine Art Society . . 



) Prof. L. L. Gruner, 
] of Dresden . . 


( Moore, McQueen & 
I Co. 




> Thomas Brown . 

Line . . . 

Art Journal . . . 



) Samuel Cousins, 
J R.A. 


T. McLean .... 



Brunet Debaines . 

Etching . . 

T. Agnew & Sons . 



C. Waltner . . . 

Etching . . 


)R. W. Macbeth, 
f A.R.A. 

Etching . . 

T. McLean .... 




T. McLean .... 



F. A. Laguillermie 

Etching . . 

T. McLean .... 



Dujardin . . . 


Magazine of Art . . 



} - 


Fine Art Society . . 



T. O. Barlow, R.A. 

Mixed . . . 

T. Agnew & Sons . 



T. L. Atkinson . 


Fine Art Society . . 






FLOOD, A .... 

G. H. Every . . 


T. Agnew & Sons . 



C. Waltner . . . 

Etching . . 

( British and Foreign 
{ Artists' Association 



E. Gilbert Hester j 

Etching and 

Arthur Lucas . . . 



Ch. Waltner . . 

Etching . . 

T. Agnew Sons . 


W. E. (1879) 

1 T. O.Barlow, R.A. 


T. Agnew & Sons . 


W. E. (1885) 



Magazine of Art . . 





> D.A.Wehrschmidt 


T. Agnew Sons. . 












P. A. Rajon . . 

Etching . . 

( Lord R. Gower's 
\ Reminiscences 



1 T. O.Barlow. R.A. 

Mixed . . 

Private Plate . . . 


)H. Macbeth-Rae- 
\ burn. 

Etching . . 

Magazine of Art . . 


HOOK, R.A., J. C. . 

Otto Leyde, R.S.A. 

Dry Point , 

( British and Foreign 
\ Artists' Association 


HOOK, R.A., J. C. . 

A. H. Palmer . . 

Mezzotint . 




T. O. Barlow, R,A. 

Mezzotint . 

( D. T. White, and H. 
\ Graves & Co. 



G. Zobel . . . | 

Stipple and 

B. Brookes & Son . 



R. B. Parkes . . 

Mixed . . 

B. Brookes Son . 


IDYLL OF 1745, AN . 

W. Hole, R.S.A. 

Etching . . 

Virtue & Co. . . . 



T. O.Barlow, R.A. I 

Mezzotint and 

Arthur Lucas . . . 



H. Bourne . 

Line . 

Art Journal 




Magazine of Art . . 



T. O. Barlow, R.A. 

Mixed . . 

H. B. Ansdell . . . 



11 Awake ") 


G. H. Every . . 

Mezzotint . 

T. Agnew & Sons . 



Th. Chauvel . . 

Etching . . 

Arthur Tooth & Sons 




(H, R. H. Princess 

Marie of Edinburgh, 

G. H. Every. . . 

Mezzotint . 

T. Agnew & Sons . 


Crown Princess of 



jT.L. Atkinson and 
( S. Cousins, R.A. 

Mezzotint . 

T. McLean .... 



T. L. Atkinson . 

Mezzotint . 

Arthur Tooth & Sons 



IT. L. Atkinson . 

Mezzotint . 

T. Agnew & Sons . 


MINUET, THE . . . 

] Samuel Cousins, 
} R.A. 

Mezzotint . 

Henry Graves & Co. 



C. Goodeve . . 

Line . . . 

Art Journal, . . . 



Brunet Debaines . 

Etching . . 

T. Agnew & Sons . 



T. O. Barlow,R.A. 

Mezzotint . 

Henry Graves & Co. 



T. O. Barlow, R.A. 

Mezzotint . 

Henry Graves & Co. 


NEST, THE . . , . 

G. H. Every . . 

Mezzotint . 

T. Agnew & Sons . 



( Samuel Cousins, 
] R.A. 

Mezzotint . 

T. Agnew & Sons . 



T.O. Barlow,R.A. 

Mezzotint . 

T. Agnew Sons . 


" No ! " . . 

( Samuel Cousins, 


T, Affnew & Sons 



1 R.A. 
A. Mongin . . . 

Etching . . 

{ British and Foreign 
{ Artists' Association 

JLO/ / 



(R. W. Macbeth, 
1 A.R.A. 

Etching . . 

T. McLean .... 



J. Stephenson 



T* St CD hens on 


H r *?r r 



) Samuel Cousins, 
J R.A. 

Mezzotint . 

Henry Graves & Co. 




[C. Waltner. . . 

Etching . . 


T. McLean .... 


Brunet Debaines . 

Etching . . 

T. Agnew & Sons . 



T. O. Barlow . . 

Mixed . . 









! W. H. Simmons . 

Mezzotint . . 

Henry Graves & Co. 


j Samuel Cousins, 
} R.A. 

Mezzotint . . 

T. Agnew & Sons . . 



( Samuel Cousins, 
) R.A. 

Mezzotint . . 

Arthur Tooth & Sons 



I Samuel Cousins, 
J R.A. 

Mezzotint . . 

Fine Art Society . . 



^Lumb Stocks, R.A. 

Line . . . 

Art Journal. 



> W. H. Simmons . 

Mixed . , . . 

( E. Gambart & Co., 
\ and Henry Graves 
\ & Co. 



(j?" Elizabeth") 



> E. Gaujean . . 

Etching . . 

T. Agnew & Sons . 


( T. L. Atkinson 

Puss IN BOOTS . . 

< and Samuel 

Mezzotint . . 

T. McLean .... 


( Cousins, R.A. 

REVERIE, A .... 

C. Jeans. 

Line . . . 

Magazine of Art 



W. H. Simmons . 


Henry Graves & Co. 




Magazine of Art . . 




1 T. O. Barlow, R.A. 

Mezzotint . . 

Fine Art Society . . 




Richard Josey. 

Mezzotint . . 

Henry Graves & Co. 


S L KEPI NO (jre Asleep ") 

T. L. Atkinson . 

Mezzotint . . 

T. Agnew Sons . 



George Zobel . . 

Mezzotint . . 

T. Agnew & Sons . 



JT. O. Barlow, R.A.j 

Line and 

E. F. White . . . 



! G. McCulloch . . 

Mezzotint . . 

Art Union .... 






1 Lurnb Stocks, R.A. 

Line . . . 




j- T. O, Barlow, R.A. 

Mezzotint . . 

Fine Art Society . . 


VALK OK RK.ST . . . 

C. O. Murray . . 

Etching , . 

Art Journal .... 




Berlin Photog. Co. .. 


T. L. Atkinson . 

Mezzotint . . 

T. Agnew Sons 




Dowdeswell . . . 


\V A K i N ( 3 (ftv " Awake") 


|- T. O. Barlow, R.A. 

Mixed . . . 

H.B.Ansdell . . . 



George Zobel . . 
C. Waltner . . 

Mixed . . . 
Etching . . 

Arthur Tooth & Sons 
T. Agnew & Sons . 



G' r -\RD, A 

1 C. Waltner. 

Etching , . 


VKS I " 

( Samuel Cousins, 
1 R.A. 

Mezzotint . . 

T. Agnew Sons 


" YES "OR "No" ? . 

( Samuel Cousins, 
) R.A. 

Mezzotint . . 

T. Agnew Sons . 





T. Agnew Sons . 



Hanfstaengl . . . 


ST. STEPHEN . . . 


Hanfstaengl . . . 
H. Sotheran Sons . 




Berlin Photog. Co. . 




Abbey, Edwin, illustrations in Harpers 

Magazine, ii. 233. 

Abercrdmby, Earl of, letter to Millais, 
enclosing photos from the Queen, 
ii. 137. 

Acland, Sir Thomas, i. 201. 
Aitkin, Colonel, takes shooting of Kin- 

craig with Millais, i. 361. 
Albert Victor, Prince, admiration for 

" Princess Elizabeth," ii. 123. 
Allingham, William, Day and Night 

Songs, quoted, i. 257. 
Anderson, Hope, ii. 307. 
Anderson, John ("the Doctor") 
Letter to Millais on church window, 

ii. 34. 

Sketch of, ii. 33. 
Antonelli, Cardinal, i. 391. 
Argyle, Duke of, i. 355. 
Armstrong, Walter 
Description of Millais' house in Palace 

Gate, ii. 93. 
On criticisms of " Christ in the Home 

of His Parents," i. 76. 
On " Hearts are Trumps," ii. 39. 
On Millais, ii. 361. 
On " The Order of Release," i. 180. 
Arnold, Matthew 
At Birnam Hall, ii. 182. 
Congratulates Millais on Baronetcy, 

ii. 181. 

" Art and Poetry " (see The Germ). 
Art Magazines, illustrations in, i. 359. 
Artists' Benevolent Institution founded, 

ii. 36. 

Athol, Duke of, and Leech, i. 267. 
Austin, Alfred, lines on Millais, ii. 458. 


Balzac on periods of artistic life, ii. 338. 
Barlow, T. 0., sits for "The Ruling 

Passion," ii. 173. 

Barnay, Luder, letter to Millais, i. 424. 
Barrett takes engravings of " Bubbles " 

to Millais, ii, 189. 
Barry, Sir J. Wolfe, fishing, ii. 322. 

Barwell, F. B. 

Note on " Speak ! Speak ! " ii. 307. 
Notes on " The Rescue," i. 250. 
On portrait of Sir James Paget, ii. 39. 
On Westell, the model, i. 184. 
On"Yes,"ii. 88. 
On "Christ in the Home of His 

Parents," i. 74. 

Bayard, Smile, letter to Millais, ii. 101. 
Baynes. Thomas Spencer, opinion of 

"The Rescue," i. 253. 
Beaconsfield. Lord 
Anecdotes of, ii. 76. 
Last letter written by, ii. 138. 
Sits to Millais, ii. 134'. 
Beers, Jan van, letter to Millais, i. 424. 
Benest, Edward, on " Christ in the 

Home of His Parents," i. 76. 
Benest, Miss, account of Millais, i. 7. 
Benson, Lionel, stands for man in 

Yes," ii. 88. 
Benson, Robert, i. 317. 
Bernhardt, Sarah, account of, ii. 107. 
Bessel instructs Millais in drawing, i. n. 
Bett, John, of Rohallion, ii. 155. 
Bicknell, of Denmark Hill, friend of 

Turner, i. 157. 

Black, William, note to Millais, ii. 224. 
Blenheim Pictures, ii. 366. 
Blunt, Arthur, (Arthur Cecil), ii. 418. 
Boehm, J. E., congratulates Millais on 

" Mddaille d'honneur," ii. 101. 
Bonheur, Rosa 
Entertains Millais at Fontaineblean, 

ii. 13. 

Meets Millais in Scotland, i. 210. 
Boothby, Major, sits for knight in " The 

Ransom," i. 366. 
Boothby, Miss (Mrs. William Millais), 

i- 343- 

Boyle, Hon. Mrs., i. 68. 

Brandreth, Mr. and Mrs., i. 371. 

Branwyn, Frank, drawings, i. 359. 

Bright, John, salmon-fishing, ii. 127. 

Bronte, Charlotte, ii. 403. 

Brooks, Shirley, i. 350 ; ii. 403. 

Brooks, Sir William CunlifEe. deer 
stalking, 396, 401. 



Brown, Rawdon, i. 320. 

Millais stays with, i. 391 . 
Browning, Robert 

Letter to Lady Millais, i. 439. 
Letter to Millais, i. 440- 
Buckstone, Beatrice (Mrs. Walter War 
ren), model for " Cinderella," etc., 
ii. 128. 
Burchell founds " Cyclographic Club," 

i. 65. 
Burne-Jones, Sir Edward, i. 61. 

Drawing of Millais, ii. 335. 
Byng, Ivor, sits for " The Ruling Pas 
sion," ii. 173- 

Calderon, Philip, ii. 381. 

Congratulates Millais on Baronetcy, 

ii. 177. 
Campbell, Colonel, sits for "The 

Knight," i. 310. 
Campbell, John, shoots grouse with 

Millais, ii. 23. 

Campbell, Lord Archibald, salmon-fish 
ing, i. 390. 
Canterbury, Archbishop of (Benson), 

at R. A. banquet, ii. 319. 
Canterbury, Archbishop of (Langley), 
on " My First Sermon," i. 378, 379- 
Carlyle, Thomas, story of, i. 278. 
Castle Urquhart, ii. 92. 
Cellier, Alfred, ii. 418. 
Chantry bequest to Royal Academy, ii 


Cholmondeley, Reginald 
Collects birds of Paradise, ii. 169. 
In Scotland with Millais, i. 386. 
Requests Millais to paint Thomas 

Carlyle, ii. 159. 
Clay, Frederick, ii. 418. 
Cleaver, Reginald, drawings, i. 359. 
Clifford, Charles, ii. 415. 
Coleridge, Arthur, i. 341. 
Collier, Hon. John, congratulates Mil 
lais on P. R. A., ii. 329. 
Collier, Sir Robert (Lord Monckswell) 

ii. 144- 

Collins, Charles, i. 89, 377. 
Drawing of Millais, ii. 217. 
Gives up painting, i. 133. 
In Scotland with Millais, i. 243. 
Paints at Worcester Park Farm, i. 1 16 
Paints fire-hose in " The Rescue," i 

251 ; ii. 162. 

Pre-Raphaelitism, and, i. 51. 
Visits the Millais, i. 288. 
Collins, Wilkie 
Letter to Millais, i. 281. 
Origin of Woman in White) i. 278. 

Collinson, James, and Pre-Raphael 
itism, i. 51. 

Combe, Thomas, sketch of, i. 87. 
Conacher, Robert, ii. 156. 
Corbould and Punch^ ii. 270. 
Corelli, Marie 

Letter of apology to Millais, ii. 190. 
Opinion of magazine work, i. 360. 

Estimate of his own work, ii. 380. 
Impressionism, ii. 2. 
Cousins, Samuel, engraves "Cherry 

Ripe," ii. 121. 
* Cyclographic Club," account of, i. 62, 


Czar of Russia, reception at Foreign 
Office to, 1.417. 


D'Aumale, Due, congratulates Millais, 

ii. 161. 
D'Epine', letter to Millais on death of 

Fortuny, i. 423. 
Dalby, Sir William, ii. 250. 
Dalrymple, Mrs., i. 363. 
Davis, H. W. B. 
Notes on Millais as landscape painter, 

ii. 450. 

On " Murthly Water," ii. 204. 
Dawson, Edgar, ii. 182, 185. 
De Keyser in Paris, ii. 106. 
Delaborde, Henri, letter to Millais, ii. 


Delamere, Lord and Lady, i. 367. 
Detaille, description of, ii. 106. 
Deverell, Walter, i. 70. 

Founds " Cyclographic Club," i. 65. 
Pre-Raphaelitism, and, i. 51. 
Sketch of, i. 223. 
Dickens, Charles, ii. 403. 
Death, ii. 30. 

Letters to Millais, i. 249, 275. 
On " Christ in the Home of His 

Parents," i. 75. 

Dickens, Kate (Mrs. Perugini) 
Account of sitting for " The Black 

Brunswicker," i. 354. 
Impressions of Millais, ii. 372. 
Letter of thanks to Millais for his 

sketch, ii. 30. 

Dinan, Millais at, i. 9. - 

Dinner-party of thirteen sequel, ii. 182. 
Donovan, story of interview with Mil 
lais, ii. 379- 
Drummond Castle, Millais stays at, i. 

Drury, of Shotover Park, and Millais, 

i. 37- 

Du Maurier, George, L.-P.-B., ii. 265, 



Du Maurier, George (continued) 

Account of Leech, i. 261. 

Account of Leech's funeral, i. 274. 

Bust in Royal Academy, ii. 267. 

Congratulates Millais on Baronetcy^ 
ii. 178. 

Death, ii. 284. 

Eyesight, ii. 270, 273. 

Letters to Millais, ii. 271, 277, 279, 282. 

Loves size, ii. 266. 

Meets Millais, ii. 265. 

Peter Ibbetson, ii, 273,. 274. 

Trilby, ii. 281, 283. 
Du Maurier, Sylvia, ii. 270. 
Duranty on 

English Art (1878), ii. 102, 105. 

English pictures in Paris Exhibition, 

i. 246. 

Durham, Edith, note on Millais in 
painting schools, ii. 365. 

Eastlake, Sir Charles, i. 392. 

Eaton, Edith, lines to Princess Eliza 
beth, ii. 124. 

Eden, Arthur, ii. 228, 250. 

Ella, Professor, Musical Union, ii. 425. 

Evamy, John, i. 3. 

Eyre, Mary, model for "The Bride," i. 
332, 349- 

Eyre, Miss, i. 333, 343? 348- 

Flower, Cyril (Lord Battersea), i. 418. 
Ford, Onslow 

Bust of Millais, ii. 219. 

On Millais in sculpture gallery, ii. 350. 
Ford, Sir Clare, sends Queen of Spain's 

invitation to Millais, ii. 109. 
Forster, John, begs Millais to paint 

Lord Lytton's portrait, ii. 79. 
Fortuny meeting with Millais, i. 422. 
Fotheringham, owner of Murthly, ii. 1 56. 
Frere, Edouard, painting children, ii. 


Frere, Sir Bartle, i. 320. 
Freshfield, Mrs., ii. 415. 
Frith, W. P. 

Accompanies Millais to Paris, ii. 13. 
Account of visit to Paris with Millais, 

ii. 106. 

At Mauritzhuis with Millais, ii. 108. 
Congratulates Millais on " Me'daille 

d'Hpnneur," ii. 98. 
Description of Turner's studio, i. 156. 
On art critics, ii. 371. 
Froude gives information to Millais on 

Mary Queen of Scots, i. 385. 
Furniss, skits on Millais 7 pictures, ii. 270. 

Gainsborough, Thomas, ii. 402. 
Galli, Prince, art treasures, i. 390. 

In Paris, ii. 106. 

Meets Millais in Scotland, i. 210. 
Garibaldi at Stafford House, i. 417. 
Garret, John, sketch of, ii. 147, 
Gautier, Thdophile, on English pictures 

in Paris Exhibition, i. 246. 
Geefs, M., ii. 161. 
Gibson, Charles Dana, drawings, i. 359; 

ii. 280. 
Gladstone, Catherine, note of thanks 

for portrait, ii. 209. 
Gladstone, Right Hon. W. E. 

Letter to J. G. Millais, ii. 114. 

Letter to Millais, ii. 208. 

Letter offering Baronetcy, ii. 177. 

On sitting to Millais, ii. 66, 113. 

Sitting to Millais, ii. no. 
Gould, John 

At Loch More, ii. 25. 

Collection of birds-of-Paradise, ii. 169. 
Graham, John, of Skelmorlie, sale of 

his pictures, i. 317. 
Granby, Marchioness of, sits for nun in 

" Mercy," ii, 199. 
Grant, Sir Francis, on "Eve of St. 

Agnes," i. 373. 
Granville, Lord, ii. 404. 
Gray, Albert, ii. 6. 

Notes on Millais' travels, ii. 107. 
Gray, Alice (Mrs. Stibbard), i. 305, 324, 

327, 383- 

Poses for " Celia," ii. 2. 
Sits for " Effie Deans," ii. 87. 
Gray, Euphemia Chalmers (see Millais, 

Gray, George, ii. 155. 

Receives Millais at Bowerswell, ii. 297. 
Story of " Chill October," ii. 30. 
Gray, Mrs., death, ii. 304. 
Gray, Sophie, i. 305, 324, 327. 
Green, N. E., founds " Cyqlographic 

Club," i. 65. 

Grisi at Villa Spence, Florence, i. 391. 
Gulich, John, drawings, i. 359. 


Haggart, James, ii. 156. 
Hall, Rev. Armstrong 

Obituary notice of Millais, ii. 312. 

On Millais and influence of Perth, 

ii. 254. 

Hall, George and Charles, ii. 169. 
Hall, Sir Charles, ii. 426. 
Halliday, " Mike," i. 222, 238, 257. 

Hunting, i. 265. M 

In Scotland with Millais, i. 367, 371. 

S 2 


Hamilton, General, i. 363. 
Harcourt, Aubrey, ii. 6r. 
Harcourt, Sir William V., ii. 228. 

At Erigmore, ii. 69. 

Congratulates Millais on P. R. A., ii. 


Entertains Millais, i. 386. 
Letter to Millais, on deer-stalking, i. 

Hardwick, Philip, founds Artists' Benev 
olent Institution with Millais, ii. 36. 
Hare, John, ii. 350. 
Hatherell, Dr., drawings, i. 359. 
Herkomer, Professor Hubert 
Account of receiving gold medal 

(Paris), ii. 105. 
Letter to Millais, ii. 308. 
Letter to Millais on " The Blind Girl," 

i. 242. 
Heugh, John, note of thanks for his 

mother's portrait, ii. 41. 
Hillgrove-Turner, Sir, i. ir. 
Hills, Thomas Hyde, ii. 44. 
Hodgkinson, Clement, discovers gold- 
fields, i. 2. 
Hodgkinson, George and Emily, Millais 

visits, i. 159. 
Hodgkinson, Henry, i. 2, 34. 

Buys " Yeoman of the Guard," ii. 80. 
Hole, Canon, at Leech's funeral, i. 274. 
Hughes, Arthur 
Account of Miss Siddal (Mrs. D. G. 

Rossetti), i. 144. 

Account of sitting for " The Pro- 
. scribed Royalist," i. 172. 
Account of Walter Deverell, i. 224. 
On " Cyclographic Club," i. 65. 
, On "The Rescue," i. 248. 
:' " Ophelia," i. 146. 

Pre-Raphaelitism, and, i. 51. 
Story of Millais' sketch of A. Munro, 
-.. i. 81. 

Hunt, W. Holman, i. 402, segq. 
Account of 'meeting Millais, i. 43. 
Account of Pre-Raphaelite Brother- 
'- hood, i. 51. 

Congratulates Millais on P. R. A., ii. 

Extract from letter on Millais' death, 

i. 416. 
Extracts from letters from East, 1854, 

i. 229,403; 1871; i. 410. 
Journey to East, i. 222. 
Letter to Millais from Firenze, ii. ii. 
" Light of the World," i. 135, 
Opinion of Millais 7 pictures, i. 


Paints at Worcester Park Farm, i. 1 16. 
Pencil sketch of Millais, ii. 217. 
" Porphyro," i. 46. 
"Rienzi," i. 73. 

pictures, i. 344, 

Hunt, W. Holman (continued) 
Rossetti, D. G., and, i. 50. 
Success, i. 356, 357. 
" The Scapegoat," i. 229, 303. 


Ingram, Sir William, buys " Bubbles," 
and sells it to Messrs. Pears, ii. iSo/, 
Irving, Sir Henry, ii. 250. 
Israels, Josef, painting children, ii. 344, 


James, Arthur Gwynne, sits for " Effie 

Deans," ii. 87. 
James, George, sits for "The Ruling 

Passion," ii. 172. 

James, Sir Henry (Lord James of Here 
ford), ii. 144, 228, 250. 
At Erigmore, ii. 69. 
Recollections of Millais, ii. 403. 
James, Willie, model for "Bubbles," 

ii. 172, 1 86, 271. 
Jameson, Eliza 

Last interview with Millais, ii. 258. 
Reminiscence of Millais, ii. 98. 
Jones, George, lines on, i. 27. 
Jopling, Joseph, i. 362. 

Sketch of, i. 427. 

Jopling, Mrs. (Jopling-Rowe), "Recol 
lections of Sir John Millais," i. 443. 


Keay, James, ii. 156. 
Keeley, Mrs., ii. 403. 
Keeley, Robert, ii. 403. 
Kennedy on Pre-Raphaelite Brother 
hood, i. 56. 
Knole House, interior in " Eve of St. 

Agnes," i. 372. 

Knowles, James, friend of Tennyson, 
ii. 141. 


Lambton, General, ii. 250. 
Landseer, Sir Edwin, i. 355. 
Anecdotes of, ii. 44. 
Letter to Lady Millais, ii. 42. 
Opinion of Millais' pictures, i. 344, 


Unfinished pictures, ii. 47. 
Lang, Andrew, notes on Millais' works, 

i. 183, note. 
Langtry, Mrs., sits for "Effie Deans," 

ii. 87. 
Layard, Sir Henry, acts as guide to 

Millais, i. 390, 391. 
Lear, Edward, sings Tennyson's songs, 

ii. 142. 
Lear, Rev. Richard, sits for monk in 

"Mercy," ii. 199. 



Leech, John, i. 222, 343 ; ii. 403. 
Death, i. 274, 378. 
Letters to Millais, i. 269, 270. 
Opinion of Millais' pictures, i. 344, 


Salmon-fishing, i. 266. 
Sketch of, i. 261. 

Story of Duke of Athol and, i. 267. 
Leighton, Lord 
At Henley Regatta, ii. 376. 
" Cimabue," ii. 259. 
Congratulates Millais on Baronetcy, 

ii. 177. 

Death, ii. 326. 
Illness, ii. 314. 
Letters to Millais on R. A. banquet, 

ii. 315, 316. 
Lempriere family, i. 7. 
Lempriere, Major-General Arthur 
Recollections of Millais as a boy, i. 


Sits for " The Huguenot," i. 148. 
Leotard, French gymnast, i. 363. 
Leslie, G. D., on Millais sitting for 
Lord Petre in "Rape of the Lock," 
i. 164. 

Leslie, Henry, ii. 421. 
Lewis, Arthur, ii. 92. 
Lindsay, Colonel, sits for "Jephthah," 

ii. 5. 

Lindsay, Sir Coutts, i. 363. 
Liszt, Abbe', ii. r6r. 

Presented to the Millais, i. 392. 
Livingstone, Dr., in Scotland, i. 390. 
Lloyd, Dr., visits Millais, ii. 61. 
Lloyd, , on " The Vale of Rest," i. 


Lome, Marquess of, i. 386. 
Louis Napoleon, re-elected President of 

the Republic, i. 152. 
Louise, Princess, calls on Millais, ii. 

Low, Frances, on' teaching of "The 

Vale of Rest," i. 348. 
Luard, John Dalbiac 

In chambers with Millais, i. 291. 
Sketch of, i. 243. 


McBean, Major, sits for guard in " The 

Ransom," i. 366. 
Macdonald, of Kepplestone, ii. 445. 

Collection of artists' portraits, ii. 446. 
McEwan, Gordon, sits for "St. Ste 
phen," ii. 303. 
MacGregor, Athol, ii. 155. 
Mackenzie, Susan Ann, note on sitting 

for " Esther," i. 384- 
Madox Brown 

Contributes to The Germ, i. 67. 

Madox Brown (continued) 
D. G. Rossetti, and, i. 50. 
Description of Miller, of Preston, i. 


On " The Blind Girl," i. 240. 
Assists Millais through custom-house, 

i. 392. 

At Villa S pence, Florence, i. 391. 
Marks, H. S., letter on Millais' pictures, 

ii. 132. 
Marochetti, Baron 

Bust of Lady Millais, i. 300, 368. 
Entertains Sir John and Lady Millais, 

i. 446. 
Opinion of " The Vale of Rest," i. 

Statuette of Millais and of Lady 

Millais, ii. 218. 
Martin, Theodore, at Thackeray's 

funeral, i. 377^ 
" i P] 

Max Nordau on Pre-Raphaelitism, i. 

Maxwell, Sir William Stirling, Life of 

Don John of Austria, i. 288. 
May, Phil, drawings, i. 359. 
Meissonier, description of, ii, 106. 
Millais, Alice, sits for " Romans Leav 
ing Britain," ii. 421. 
Millais, Carrie (Mrs. Stuart- Wortley), 
i. 371 ; ii. 52, 83. 

On Millais' love of music, ii. 417. 

Portrait, i. 392. 

Sits for " Grey Lady," ii. 162. 
Millais, Effie-(Mrs. James), ii. 17. 

As " Little Red Riding Hood," i. 395. 

Model for My First " and " Second 

Sermons," i. 372, 378. 

Portrait, i. 392. 

Sits for " Nell Gwynne," ii. 162. 
Millais, Emily (Mrs. Wallack), i. 327. 
Millais, Emily Mary (Mrs. Hodgkinson), 
i. 2. 

Educates her son, i. 3, 4, 17. 
Millais, Everett, ii. 17. 

Birth, i. 305. 

Sits for " Effie Deans," ii. 87. 
Millais, Geoffrey, i. 374. 

In "Murthly Water," ii. 203. 

Model for " Mercy," ii. 199. 

Skill as photographer, ii. 200. 

Visit to his father's birthplace, ii. 253. 
Millais, George, i. 428, 433 ; ii. 17, 41- 

Death, ii. 92. 
Millais, Sir John Everett 

Account of intercourse with D. G. 
Rossetti, i. 52. 

Account of starting Artists' Orphan 
Fund, ii. 36. 

Account of " The Black Brunswicker," 
i. 350. 



Millais, Sir John Everett (continued} 
Acrostic, ii. 234. 
Admiration for PuncJi^ ii. 269. 
Appreciation of Perth, ii. 257. 
As a speaker, ii. 382, 385. 
As an Academy student, i. 24. 
As landscape painter, ii. 450. 
Associate of the R. A., i. 217. 
At Dinan, i. 9. 

At H. M. Stanley's wedding, ii. 69. 
At his zenith, i. 383. 
Baronetcy, ii. 174, 408. 
Begging letters to, ii. 242. 
Birth, i. i, 2. 
Buys the " Leda," i. 391. 
Chairman of Hanging Committee, ii. 


Comes to London, i. 12. 
Comic Sketch-book, i. 211. 
Contributes to The Germ^ i. 66, 67. 
" Cyclographic Club," and, i. 65. 
D. C. L. of Oxford, ii. 127. 
Death, ii. 335. 
Deer-stalking, i. 396. 
Delight in Kensington Gardens, ii. 


Diary, extracts from, i. 125, 133, 141. 
Doubles, ii. 220. 
Early taste for drawing, i. 2, 
Enters Royal Academy, i. 18. 
Finishes Landseer's pictures, ii. 47, 

162, 174. 

Friendship for Holman Hunt, i. 402. 
Funeral in St. Paul's, ii. 336. 
Ghost stories, i. 272 ; ii. 416. 
Gives evidence as to Mr. Drury's 

sanity, i. 170. 

Goes to Thackeray's funeral, i. 377. 
Hunts, i. 177, 265. 
Illness, ii. 274, 300, 304, 326. 
Illustrates Anthony Trollope's works, 

i. 282. 
In Memoriam (PuncJi)^ ii. 337. 

By Alfred Austin, ii. 458. 
Indignation at " Bubbles " being used 

as advertisement, ii. 189. 
Jersey friends, i. 7. 
Lines on Royal Academy Exhibition, 

ii. 239. 

London houses, i. 363 ; ii. 93. 
Love for Highlands and Highlanders, 

ii. 199. 

Love of fishing, i. 14, 21. 
Love of music, ii. 249, 417. 
Love of Natural History, i. 2. 
Marriage, i. 287. 
Meets Adelina Patti, i. 391. 

Charles Dickens, i. 248. 

Du Maurier, ii. 265. 

Gambart and Rosa Bonheur, i. 210. 

Holman Hunt, i. 43. 

Millais, Sir John Everett (continued) 

Livingstone, i. 389. 

Lord Beaconsfield, ii. 75. 

Mascagni, ii. 426. 

Ruskin, i. 116. 

Thackeray, i. 160. 
Member of Institute of France, ii. 


On Landseer and his critics, ii. 44. 
On newspaper criticisms, i. 303, 339, 


On woman's place in Art, i. 147. 
Order "Pour le Merite" from Ger 
many, ii. 161. 
Paints at Worcester Park farm, i. 


Parody on " The Twa Dogs," ii, 240. 
Personal appearance, ii. 376, 390. 
Personal characteristics, ii. 223, 376, 

380, 393, 402, 442. 
Personal friends, i. 402, 422 ; ii. 228, 

250, 265, 335, 422, 426. 
Personal habits, ii. 224. 
Plays chess, ii. 233. 
Plays lawn tennis, ii. 69. 

A love song, ii. 250. 

On Burns' centenary, ii. 241. 

To Psyche, ii. 249. 
Portraits of, ii. 217. 
President of Royal Academy, ii. 326. 
Presides at Royal Academy banquet,. 

i. 319, 446. 
Receives gold " M^daille d'Honneur," 1 

ii. 98, 105. 

Receives his first medal, i. 14. 
Rents Newmill and shooting of Stob- 

hall, ii. 290. 

Requests for autographs, ii. 245. 
Scene with Hanging Committee, i. 

Sends pictures to Paris Exhibition 

1855, i. 246. 
Shoots and fishes in Scotland, i. 266, 

289, 361, 367, 37i, 3S6; ii. 25,, 


Sketches Dickens after death, ii. 30. 
Speech at Literary Fund dinner, ii. 


Sport at Murthly, ii. 148. 
Story of interview with Donovan, ii. 

Struggle against adverse criticism, u 

Talks on architecture with Raskin, i. 


"Thoughts on our Art," ii. 385. 
Three historic gatherings, i. 417. 
Tour abroad with Lady Millais and 

Sir William Harcourt, i. 390. 
Tour in Holland, ii. 108. 


Millais, Sir John Everett (continued) 
Transition in art, ii. i. 
Visits Hawarden, ii. 169. 
His parents, i. 327. 
John Gould, ii. 169. 
Oxford, i. 34. 
Rosa Bonheur, ii. 13. 
Sarah Bernhardt, ii. 107. 
Scotland with Collins, Halliday, 

and Luard, i. 243. 
Scotland with Ruskins, i. 196. 
Studios of Gerome and Meissonier 

ii. 106. 

Yachting trip to Jersey, ii. 320. 
Millais (Sir) John Everett, Art life and 

methods, ii. 338, segq. 
Appreciation of work of other artists, 

ii- 354- 

As critic, ii. 350, 379. 
Brushes, ii. 340. 

Estimate of his own work, ii. 353, 380. 
Materials, ii. 340. 
Modelling with clay, ii. 350. 
Models, ii. 14, 192, 343. 
Note on fashion in Art, ii. 364. 
Objection to interviewers, ii. 356. 
On historical painting, ii. 362. 
Opinion of Art 'critics, ii. 370. 
Opinion of Art Schools, ii. 362. 
Opinion on Art, ii. 359, 372. 
Painting animals, ii. 347. 
Children, ii. 344. 
Dogs, ii. 348. 
Lizards, ii. 349. 
Mice, ii. 349. 
Vehicles, ii. 340. 

Millais (Sir) John Everett, Letters to 
Robert Benson, i. 318. 
Philip Calderon, R.A., ii. 143. 
Mr. Combe, i. 91, 97, 100, 101, 102, 
124, 150, 155, I59> 161, 162, 163, 
171, 178, 186, 189, 191, 201, 202, 

204, 2 1 8, 221, 226, 245. 

Mrs Combe, i. 88, 89, 93, 94, 99, 103, 

116, 121, 122, 123, 151, 159, 190, 

206, 224, 226. 

Kate Dickens (Mrs. Perugini),ii. 173. 
Du Maurier, ii. 266, 272, 278, 280, 284. 
Editor of Times on National Portrait 

Gallery, ii. 209. 

W. W. Fenn on deer-stalking, i. 307 
Frith, ii. 322. 
Miss Gladstone on grant for National 

Gallery, ii. 365. 
George Hodgkinson, i. 192. 
Mrs. Hodgkinson, i. 166, 168, 170, 

Joseph Jopling, i. 427, 428, 430; 

ii. 346. 
Mrs. Jopling, i. 433. 

On critics, ii. 370. 


Millais, Sir John Everett (continued'} 

Ada Leech, i. 276. 

Lord Leigh ton, ii. 364. 

Everett Millais, on fire at NewhilL 
ii. 293. 

John G. Millais, ii. 321. 

Lady Millais quoted, i. 295, 297, 300, 
324, 336, 347, .350, 355, 361, 367, 
371,374,386511.6,24,75,84, 121, 
137, 1 60, 182, 213, 286, 289, 304. 

. > 

illiam Millais, n. 322, 326. 

Briton Riviere, R.A., ii. 133, 199, 300. 
Sir Henry Tate, ii. 369. 
George Wyatt, i. 178. 
Millais (Sir) John Everett, pictures, 

i. 56. 

" A Disciple," ii. 304. 
" A Forerunner," ii. 314. 
"A Souvenir of Velasquez," ii. 17. 
" An Idyll of 1745," ii. 165 and note. 
" Apple Blossoms " (Spring), i. 323, 

339, 342, 393- 

" Autumn Leaves," i. 290 ; ii. 458. 
Black and white drawings, i. 358. 
" Blow, Blow, Thou Winter Wind," 

- 2 97, 457- 
" Boadicea," i. 385. 
" Boyhood of Raleigh," ii. 17, 23. 
" Bride of Lammermoor," ii. 87. 
"Bridesmaid throwing the Lucky 

Slipper," i. 374. 
" Bubbles," ii. 186. 
" Charlie is My Darling," i. 379. 
" Cherry Ripe," ii. 117, 118, 121. 
" Chill October," ii. 26, 75, 457. 
" Christin the Home of His Parents,"* 

i- 745 ". 394- 

" Christmas Eve, 1887," ii. 200. 
" Cinderella," ii. 128, 131. 
" Clarissa," ii. 199 
" Crusader's Return," i. 328. 
" Cuckoo,' 7 ii. 127. 
"Cymon and Iphigenia," i. 41,42, 46, 


" Dew-drenched Furze," ii. 213, 28c. 
" Diana Vernon," ii. 127. 
Drawings for Framley Parsonage? 

' 359- 

fie Deans," ii. 87. 
' Escape of a Heretic," i. 319. 

" Esther," i. 384. 

" Eve of St. Agnes," i. 372 ; ii. 394, 

" Eveline, daughter of E. Lees, Esq.," 
ii. 56. 

" Evil One Sowing Tares," i. 384. 

Exhibition of 1881, ii. 131. 

" Ferdinand lured by Ariel," i. 56, 82. 

*' Flowing to the Sea" (the Mill- 
stream), ii. 30, 39. 


Millais, Sir John Everett (continued) 
" Found," ii. 174. 

" Fringe of the Moor," ii. 55, 401, 457. 
" Glen Birnam," ii. 285. 
" Grandfather and Child," i. 41. 
Grosvenor Exhibition, 1886, ii. 195. 
" Halcyon Days," ii. 290. 
, 4t Hearts are Trumps," ii. 39. 

"Isabella" (see u Lorenzo and Isa 

"Jephthah," i. 392; ii. I, 5. 
L J Enfant du Regiment" ("The 

Random Shot"), i. 237. 
" Leisure Hours," i. 379. 
" Lingering Autumn," ii. 285. 
, t4 Little Miss MufEet," ii. 165. 

" Lorenzo and Isabella," i. 55, 56, 69. 
" Love of James the First of Scot 
land," i. 333, 339 349- 
e * Mariana," i. 56, 98, 106, 161. 
" Mercy" ("St. Bartholomew's Day") 

ii. 196. 

" Message from the Sea," ii. 165. 
" Murthly Moss," ii. 74, 200. 
" Murthly Water," ii. 203. 
" My First Sermon," i. 372, 377. 
te My Second Sermon," i. 372, 379. 
" Nell Gwynne," ii. 47, 162. 
"No," ii.' 56,69. 

" North-west Passage," ii. 48, 52. 
" Ophelia," i. 56, 115, 144, 151 5 ii- 412, 

"Over the Hills and Far Away," 

ii. 7o, r 457. 
" Parable of the Lost Piece of Money," 

i. 368, 371. 
" Peace Concluded " (" Return from 

the Crimea"), i. 112, 290. 
" Perfect Bliss," ii. 165. 
" Pilgrims to St. Paul's," ii. 19. 
" Pizarro," i. 38, 46. 
"Pomona," ii. 161. 
Portraits of 

Sir John Astley, ii. 134, 147. 

Lord Beaconsfield, ii. 133. 

Mrs. Beddington, ii. 117. 

Mrs. BischoSsheim, ii. 40. 

Principal Caird, of Glasgow, ii. 133. 

Thomas Carlyle, ii. 1 59. 

Mrs. Chamberlain, ii. 285. 

Sir John Fowler, ii. 20. 

Mrs. Charles Freeman, i. 371. 

John Garret, ii. 147. 

Mrs. Gibbs, ii. 285. 

Right Hon. W. E. Gladstone (1879), 

ii. no, 113. 
Right Hon. W. E. Gladstone 

(1884), ii. 166. 
Right Hon. W. E. Gladstone 

(1889), ii. 208. 
Sir Gilbert Greenall, ii. 134, 147. 

Millais, Sir John Everett (continued) 
George Grote, ii. 36. 
John Hare, ii. 299. 
Harold, son of Dowager Countess 

of Winch elsea, i. 383. 
Mrs. Heugh, ii. 41. 
Himself, for Uffizzi Gallery, ii. 127, 


Daughters of J. R. Hoare, ii. 83. 
J. C. Hook, R.A., ii. 160.^ 
Marchioness of Huntley, ii. 24. 
Sir Henry Irving, ii. 165. 
Captain and Mrs. James (Effie 

Millais), ii. 134. 
Mrs. Jopling, i. 429 ; ii. 117. 
Sir John Kelk, ii. 24. 
Mrs. Arthur Kennard, ii. 1 1 7. 
Mrs. Langtry, ii. 91. 
Dorothy, daughter of Mrs. Harry 

Lawson, ii. 285. 
Miss Nina Lechmann, ii. 20 and 

note, 451. 

Marquis of Lome, ii. 165. 
Lord Lytton, ii. 76. 
Henry^ Manners, Marquis of Gran- 

by, i. 374- 

H.R.H. Princess Marie of Edin 
burgh (Crown Princess of Rou- 
mania), ii. 159. 
Cardinal Newman, ii. 133, 147. 
Sir James Paget, ii. 39. 
Lady Peggy Primrose, ii. i66j 
Marquis of Salisbury, ii. 160. 
Mrs. Sebastian Schlesinger, ii. 83, 
Miss Ada Simon, ii. 304. 
Miss Alcyone Stepney, ii. 117. 
Mrs. James Stern, ii. 160. 
Mrs. Stibbard, ii. 117. 
Wyclif Taylor, i. 383. 
Miss E. Tennant, ii. 56. 
Lord Tennyson, ii. 141. 
Sir Henry Thompson, ii. 134, 143. 
Duchess of Westminster, ii. 76, 

134, 1 60. 

Duke of Westminster, ii. 39. 
Lord Wimborne, ii. 134. 
" Pot Pourri," i. 306. 
" Princes in the Tower," ii. 88. 
"Princess Elizabeth," ii. 117, 122, 

40 1. 

" Punchinella," ii. 199. 
" Return of the Dove to the Ark," 

i. 98, 105, 135 ; ii. 440. 
" Romans leaving Britain," i. 384. 
"Rosalind and Celia, i. 392; ii. i, 2, 

n, 19,338. 

" St. Agnes' Eve," ii. 442. 
" St. Stephen," ii. 300, 304, 312, 394. 
" Shelling Peas," ii. 208. 
" Sir Isumbras," i. 306, seqq. ; ii. 398. 
" Sleeping," i. 392 ; ii. 6. 



Millais, Sir John Everett (continued) 
" Sound of Many Waters," ii. 83. 
" Speak! Speak ! " ii. 300, 304, 314, 


"Stella," ii. 19. 

"Stitch ! Stitch ! Stitch ! " ii. 52, 83. 
" Suspense," i. 374. 
" Sweet Emma Morland," ii. 289. 
"Sweetest Eyes," ii. 141. 
"The Beef-eater," ii. 397. 
"The Black Brunswicker," ii. 350, 

365, and note. 
"The Blind Girl," i. 237, 240, 310; 

ii. 394, 451- 
"The Captive, 1 ' ii. 162. 
" The Crown of Love," ii. 56. 
"The Deserted Garden," ii. 55, 57. 
"The Empty Cage," ii. 304. 
"The Flood," i. 97, 98 ; ii. 18, 23. 
"The Gambler's Wife," ii. 19. 
"The Grey Lady," ii. 162. 
"The Huguenot," i. 56, 135, 136, 146; 

ii. 196, 394, 397- 
"The Knight-Errant," ii. 24. 
" The Last Trek," ii. 332. 
"The Minuet, 7 ' i. 390, 392. 
" The Moon is Up," ii. 285, 
" The Old Castle," ii. 457- 
"The Old Garden," ii. 203, 204, 401, 


Lines on, 207. 
"The Order of Release," i. 180, 184; 

ii- 394, 453- 

"The Poacher's Wife," i. 362. 
"The Proscribed Royalist," i. 164, 

165, 172. 

"The Random Shot,"i. 239. 
"The Ransom," i. 362, 365,371. 
" The Rescue," (" The Fireman ") , i. 

112, 247, 250., 254, 258; ii. 162, 


"The Ruling Passion," ii. 169, 170. 
"The Sisters," ii. 19. 
"The Stowaway," ii. 165. 
" The Waif and Stray," ii. 165. 
The White Cockade," i. 368. 
" The Widow's Mite," i. 38; ii. 20, 23. 
" The Wolf's Den," i. 374; ii. 17. 
"Time the Reaper," ii. 314. 
"Trust Me,"i. 371. 
" Two Bairns," ii. 213. 
"Vale of Rest," i. 328, 336, 339, 342, 

349, 392 ; ii. 338, 339, 393, 398, 

457, 458. 

"Victory, O Lord (" Joshua "), ii. 34. 
" Waking," i. 385, 392. 
Water-colours, i. 360. 
"Woodman's Daughter," i. 56, 97, 

109; ii. 339. 

" Yeoman of the Guard," ii. 79. 
" Yes," ii. 88 and note. 

Millais, John Guille, ii. 17, 40, 52, 83. 
Account of visiting his father's birth 
place, ii. 253. 
Engages models, ii. 192. 
Finds print of "North- West Passage" 

in South Africa, ii. 52. 
Fishing at Murthly, ii. 155. 
Game Birds and Shooting Sketches, 

ii. 286. 

Visits to John Gould, ii. 169. 
Millais, John William 
Death, ii. 20. 

Incurably musical, ii. 417. 
Sketch of, i. i. 
Millais, Lady, i. 287. 
Account of visit to Turner, i. 156. 
Assists her husband, i. 287. 
Eyesight, ii. 299. 

In Germany under oculist, ii. 304. 
Record of pictures, i. 306. 
Story of Charles Reade and "Sir 

Isumbras," i. 313. 
Millais, Margaret, sits for "Pomona," 

ii. 161. 

Millais, Mary 
Model for "Waking," i. 385. 
Portrait, i. 392. 

Story about "Waking," i. 395. 
Millais, Sophie (Mrs. Mac Ewan), ii. 

274 note. 

In "The Flood," ii. 18. 
Model for " Clarissa" and " Punchin- 

ella," ii. 199. 

Sits for " Princess Elizabeth," ii. 123. 
Millais, William, i. I . 
Account of his brother receiving his 

first medal, i. 14. 

Account of visit to Scotland, i. 209. 
Account of visiting Mr. Drury, i. 36. 
Ghost story, 1-272. 
"Letter on cricket, i. 22. 
Note on " Woodman's Daughter," i. 

98, i to. 
On girls in "Return of the Dove" 

and " Mariana," i. 98. 
On his brother's slimness, i. 91. 
On origin of " The Rescue," i. 247. 
Paints at Worcester Park Farm, i. 1 16. 
Portrait of his mother, i. 4. 
Sketch of, i. 8. 
Story of sign-board of George Inn, 

Bromley, i. 165. 
Story of Thackeray, Millais, and Car- 

lyle, i. 277. 
Story of " The Vale of Rest," i. 


Water-colour landscapes, i. 176. 
Miller, James, ii. 156. 

In " Murthly Water," ii. 203. 
Miller, of Preston, Madox Brown's 

sketch of, i. 149. 

5 o8 


Millet,' impressionism, ii. 2. * 

Mills, Lady, i. 362. 

Milnes, Moncton (Lord Houghton), i. 

" Mr. Briggs " of Punch, origin of, i. 


Mitchell, Sir Thomas, i. 2. 
Moore, Albert, ii. 440. 
Mulready, i. 355. 

Munro, medallion of Millais, ii. 218. 
Munro, of Novar, friend of Turner, i. 

Murray, William,appreciation of* Cherry 

Ripe," ii. 122. 
Murthly, sport at, ii. 148. 


Nares, Sir George, and Millais, ii. 51. 
Neruda, Madame, plays in Millais' 

studio, ii, 426. 
Newman, Cardinal, sits to Millais, ii. 


Newmill, fire at, ii. 293. 
Newton, Arthur, ii. 182. 

O'Connor, John, paints archway in 

" Nell Gwynne," ii. 162. 
O'Neil, Henry, sketch of, i. 433. 
Owen, Richard, letter to Lady Millais, 

i. 436. 

Owen, Sir Cunliffe, ii. 105. 
Oxford attempts the Queen's life, i. 21. 

Palliser, Lady, sits for " Charlie is My 

Darling," i. 379. 
Parsons, Alfred, drawings, i. 359. 

Illustrations in Harper's Magazine, 
^ ii. 233. 
ratmore, Coventry 

Contributes to The Germ, i. 67. 

Pre-Raphaelitism, and, i. 51. 
Paton, Sir Noel 

Pre-Raphaelitism, and, i. 51. 

Reminiscences of Millais, ii. 330. 
Patti, Adelina and Carlotta, in Florence, 

i- 39'- 

Paxtpn, Sir Joseph, Millais sketches, 
i. T2. 

Pears, Messrs., use " Bubbles " as adver 
tisement, ii. 189. 

Perugini, Carlo, ii. 250. 

Perugini, Mrs. (see Dickens, Kate). 

Petrie, Helen, model for girls in " The 
Ransom," i. 366. 

Phillip, John, ii. 92. 
Paintings, ii. 109. 
Portraits of Millais, ii. 217, 218. 

Phillips, Claude, on " The Old Garden," 

ii. 207. 
Phillips, Frederick and Mary Stewart, 

in " Two Bairns," ii. 213. 
Piko, Horace B., letter to Millais, ii. 

Pitt, Mrs., reminiscence of Millais, ii. 


Pius IX,, i. 391. 

Pollock, Sir Frederick, i. 14; ii. 403. 
Potter, Rupert, ii. 127. 
Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood ends, i. 

Pre-Raphaelitism : its meaning and its 

history, i. 43, seqq. 
Prinsep, Valentine, i. 356. 
Letter to Millais on "Eve of St. 

Agnes," i. 374. 
On art, ii. 339. 
Reminiscences of Millais, ii. 376, 

Prints of pictures in distant lands, ii. 52. 

Quain, Sir Richard, ii. 304. 
Letter to Millais, ii. 320. 
Queen of Holland invites Millais to visit 

her, ii. 83. 
Queen of Spain invites Millais to visit 

Madrid, ii. 109. 
Queen Victoria 
And Prince Consort visit Glen Artney 

Forest, i. 401. 
Commands Millais to exhibit Lord 

Beaconsfield's portrait, ii. 137. 
Letter of thanks to Millais for Lord 
Beaconsfield's portrait, ii. 140. 


Ramage, Edie(Mme. Francisco de Paula 
Ossorio), sits for " Cherry Ripe," 
ii. 118, 121,' note. 
Raphael's Methods, i. 49. 
Reade, Charles, i. 304 ; ii. 403. 
Buys "Sir Isumbras," i. 314. 
Opinion of Millais' pictures, i. 345. 
Redford, Ernest, Notes on The Germ, 

i. 66. 
Redgprton, Millais rents salmon-fishing, 

ii. 290. 

Reid, Sir George 
Copies head in Phillips' picture for 

Millais, ii. 217. 
Reminiscences of Millais, ii. 445 and 


Reid, Sir Wemyss, it. 113. 
Reiss, Julius, Millais shoots with, ii. 



Remington, Frederick, drawings, i. 


Reminiscences of Millais by Valentine 

Prinsep, R.A., ii. 376, seqq. 
Reynolds, Sir Joshua, ii. 402. 
Riano, Gayanzos, i. 288. 
Richardson, Colonel Stuart, of Ballathie, 

ii. 155. 
Richmond, Sir W. B. 

Congratulations on " Speak, Speak," 

ii. 311. 
Letter to Millais on "Cinderella," 

ii. 131. 

Recollections of Millais, ii. 439. 
Ritchie, Mrs. Richmond (Anne Thacke 
ray), Recollections of Millais, ii, 
Riviere, Briton 

Letter on Millais' pictures, ii. 133. 
On Millais as critic, ii. 350. 
Roche, Hon. Caroline, sits for " Diana 

Vernon," ii. 127. 

Rogers, Samuel, anecdotes of, i. 19. 
Rosebery, Lord 
Congratulates Millais on speech at 

R.A. banquet, ii. 320. 
Description of Gladstone's portraits, 

ii. 1 66. 

Letter to Millais, ii. 303. 
Letters of condolence to Lady and 

Everett Millais, ii. 336 and note. 
Roselle Manor, Millais at, i. 7. 
Rossetti, Christina, contributes to The 

, Germ, i. 67. 
Rossetti, D. G. 

Contributes to The Germ, i. 67. 

Influence on Millais, i. 55. 

Later works, i. 58, 61. 

On Millais and Hanging Committee, 

i. 253. 
Opinion of Millais' pictures, i. 344, 

Opinion of " The Blind Girl," i. 

Pre-Raphaelitism and, i. 49, 52, 56, 

Rossetti, William M. 

Description of Miller, of Preston, i. 


Edits The Germ, i. 67. 
Opinion of Millais' pictures, i. 344, 


Pre-Raphaelitism and, i. 49, 51. 

Playing whist, ii. 422. 

Visits Millais, ii. 19. 
Rusldn, John 

As critic, i. 335. 

Criticism of " Sir Isumbras," i. 311. 

Description of " The Blind Girl," i. 

Ruskin, John (continued) 
On *' Mariana," i. 106. 

Millais' animal painting, ii. 347. 
* 4 Peace Concluded " and " Autumn 

Leaves," i. 290. 

" The Deserted Garden," ii. 58. 
Opinion of "The Ruling Passion," 

ii. 173. 

Pre-Raphaelitism and, i. 61, in. 
Russel, Sir George, asks Millais for 

portrait of his nephew, ii. 166. 
Russell, Lord and Lady Arthur, meet 

the Millais in Florence, i. 390. 
Russell, Sir William Howard, ii. 228. 
Gives information for " The Black 

Brunswicker," i. 350. 
Lecture on Crimean War, i. 304. 
Ryan, Miss, model for "The Hugue 
not," i. 149, 172. 

St. Heliers, Millais family at, i. 2. 
Salmon, Nellie (Mrs. Ziegler), i. 310. 
Sambourne, Linley, congratulations on 

"Speak! Speak! " ii. 311. 
Sandys, Frederic 
Pre-Raphaelitism and, i. 51. 
Skit on " Sir Isumbras," i. 313. 
Sant, J., letter to Millais, ii. 132. 
Sass, Henry, Millais enters his school, 

i. 12. 

Scharf, Sir George, ii. 159. 
Letter to Millais on National Portrait 

Gallery, ii. 210. 

Scott, Sir Walter, on literature, ii. 411. 
Seafield, Earl of, deer-drives at Bal- 

macaan, ii. 92. 

Sdmon, Felix, opinion of Millais' ill 
ness, ii. 326. 
Shah of Persia, State ball in honour of, 

i. 418. 
Shaw, Captain, Millais witnesses fire 

with, i. 257. 
Shee, Sir Martin Archer, advice to 

Millais, i. 12. 
Siddal, Miss (Mrs. D. G. Rossetti) 

Model for " Ophelia/ 5 i. 144. 
S medley, E., drawings, i. 359. 
Smith Dorrien, visits Millais, ii. 61. 
Solomon, Simeon, ii. 440. 
Somers, Lady, i. 363. 
Spencer, Lord and Lady, i. 355. 
Spielmann, M. H., quoted, i. 55; ii. 

258, on 
" Bubbles," ii. 186. 
" Cymon and Iphigenia," i. 42. 
Edie Ramage, ii. 121. 
" Fringe of the Moor," ii. 55. 
" Mariana," i. 106. 
" Murthly Moss," ii. 200. 


Spielmann, M. H. (continued) 

" Murthly Water," ii. 204. 

Onslow Ford's bust of Millais, ii. 219. 

" Ophelia," i. 145. 

" Order of Release," i. 183. 

" Over the Hills and Far Away/' ii. 70. 

Portrait of Right Hon. W. E. Glad 
stone, ii. 113. 

" St. Stephen," ii. 303. 

The Blind Girl," i. 240. 

" The Deserted Garden," ii. 58. 

" The Rescue," i. 252. 

" Vale of Rest," I 332. 

" Yeoman of the Guard," ii. 80. 
Spielmann, M. H., study of Millais' 

works, ii. 371. 

Sport a. la Fran$aise, i. 446. 
Stephens, F. G. 

Account of " Ferdinand," i. 83. 

Account of portraits for Woolner, i. 

" Sir Isumbras," i. 311. 

" The Huguenot " at Royal Academy, 
i. 146. 

Contributes to The Germ, i. 67. 

Critique of "Boyhood of Raleigh," 
ii. i 8. 

" Lorenzo and Isabella," i. 73. 

tk Romans leaving Britain," i. 384. 
Description of " Victory, O Lord I " ii. 


Interpreting Millais' works, ii. 371. 
Notes on Grosvenor Exhibition, 1886, 

ii. 195. 

Origin of " The Flood," ii. 18. 
,Pre-Raphaelitism and, i. 51. 
Stewart, Sir Douglas, proprietor of 

Murthly, ii. 156, 204. 
Stibbard, George, at Erigmore, ii. 69. 
Strakosch at Villa Spence, Florence, i. 

Strawberry Hill, Art collections at, i. 

Streatfield, Ruby (Hon. Mrs. Colville), 

stands for " The Captive," ii. 162. 
Strudwick's pictures, i. 61. 
Stuart-Wortley, Archibald, Notes on 

Millais' lessons, ii. 61. 
Sullivan, Sir Arthur, recollections of 

Millais, ii. 418. 

Sussex, H.R.H. the Duke of, i. 14. 
Sutherland, Duke and Duchess of, i. 386. 

Ball in honour of Garibaldi, i. 417. 
Swinburne, A., notes on Academy of 

1865, i. 57. 

Tadema, Alma, officer of Legion 

d'Honneur, ii. 98. 
Taggart, Thomas, sketch of, ii. 124. 

Talfourd, Frank, ii. 403. 

Tate, Henry, offer to nation, ii. 369. 

Taylor, Tom 

Critique of "The Huguenot" in 

Ptmch, i. 147. 
Letter to Millais on portrait of Wyclif 

Taylor, i. 383. 

On " Eve of St, Agnes," i. 373. 
Tennant, Dorothy (Mrs. H. M. Stanley), 

sits for No," ii. 69. 
Tennant, Sir Charles, presents portrait 

of Gladstone to nation, ii. 113. 
Tennyson, Alfred Lord 
Characteristics, ii. 142. 
Sits to Millais, ii. 134. 
The Window ; or, the Songs of the 

Wrens, ii. 421. 
Thackeray, Anne (Mrs. Ritchie), letter 

to Millais, i. 385. 
Thackeray, W. M., ii. 403. 
Death, i. 374. 
Foretells Lord Leighton's success, i. 

259 ; ii. 382. 

Intercourse with Millais, i. 276. 
Opinion of Millais' pictures, i. 345. 
The Germ, account of, i. 66; ii. 382. 
Thomas, Sergeant George and Millais, 

i- 33- 
Thomas, William Cave, suggests name 

of The Germ, i. 66. 
Thompson, Sir Henry 
Portrait of Millais, ii. 144. 
Studies painting, i. 143. 
Thorburn, Archibald, drawings, i. 359. 
Times' criticisms of Millais' pictures, 

i. 297, 298, 320, 356. 
Toole, John, ii. 250. 
Trelawny, Captain 
Sketch of, ii. 51. 
Story of, ii. 389. 
Trollope, Anthony, ii. 403. 
Account of meeting Millais, i. 282. 
Letters to Millais, i. 283. 
Turner, Colonel, i. 320. 
Turner, J. M. W., sketch of, i. 156. 


Uhde, Frederick, " Laissez venir k Moi 

les petits enfants," ii. 361. 
Urquhart, Dr., of Perth, i. 6r ; ii. 354. 


Vans-Agnew, Major, shoots grouse with 

Millais, ii. 23. 
Volunteer movement, i. 152. 


Wagner, Cosima, ii. 422. 
Wagner visits Millais, ii. 422. 
Waldegrave, Frances, Countess of, 
sketch of, i. 421. 



Walker, Fred, ii. 440. 

Sketch of, i. 335. 

" The Harbour of Refuge," ii. 204. 
Waterford, Marchioness of, i. 68, 363, 

Watts, G. F. 

Declines baronetcy, ii. 174. 

Fresco in Lincoln's Inn Hall, i. 357. 

Letter of thanks for " Stitch, Stitch, 

Stitch," ii. 83. 
Letter on " Bride of Lammermoor," 

ii. 88. 

Portrait of Millais, ii. 218. 
Wellington, Duke of, opinion of London, 

ii. 97. 
Wells, Henry, i. 289. 

Congratulates Millais on baronetcy, 

ii. 178. 

On Millais, ii. 91. 
Westall poses for Highlander in " Order 

of Release," i. 184. 

Westminster, Duke of, and portrait of 
Gladstone, ii. 113. 

Westminster, Duke of (continued} 

Letter to Millais, ii. 76. 
Wharncliffe, Lady, i. 355. 
Whistler, impressionism, ii. 2. 
White, Miss Buchanan, ii. 307. 
Whiteford, John, ii. 293. 

Saves drawings, ii. 297. 
Whitman, Walt, quoted, ii. 199. 
Wilson, Herbert, ii. 228, 250. 
Woodville, Caton, drawings, i. 359. 

In Illustrated London Neisus^ ii. 233. 
Woolner, Thomas 

On Hanging Committee and Millais, 
i. 254. 

Pre-Raphaelitism and, i. 51, 67. 

Visits Australia, i. 81. 
Wyatt and Millais, i. 34. 

York, Archbishop of 7 at R.A. banquet, 
ii. 319.