Monday, July 30, 2007

Ford Madox Brown's Chaucer

[To Lowes Dickinson, 1851]

. . . As to the papers, I have had some fine criticisms and some violent abuse. They seem to smell a rat, and begin to know that if not an actual Pre-Raphaelite Brother, I am an aider and abettor of Pre-Raphaelitism, and under that impression they do not seem to know how to act. Many of the papers who abuse Hunt and Millais most violently pass me over in utter contempt, which is hardly to be looked at as sincere. The Times seemed to have a great inclination to abuse, but to hesitate and give it up. My picture [Chaucer at the Court of King Edward III] looked well in my studio, but in the Academy it is placed too high and shone all over, which hurt it; and then I find that our pictures are so totally unlike any of the others that they lose immensely from that very reason. We ought (to do them justice) to exhibit them quite apart.

-from William Holman Hunt: The True Pre-Raphaelite by Anne Clark Amor(London: Constable, 1989) p. 79.

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