Initial J

Initial J

George Du Maurier


Wood engraving

Decoration for Margaret Oliphant's Carita

The Cornhill Magazine 33 (1876): 642

With the serial runs of The Atonement of Leam Dundas and The Hand of Ethelberta complete, The Cornill was clearly in need of a new serial with which to lead off the June issue, and put Margaret Oliphant's "silver-fork" Carita on the front page, strongly implying the kind of reader to which the magazine was attempting to appeal in the 1870s. The initial "J" (6 cm high by 3.7 cm) is not characteristic of Du Maurier's other Cornhill miniatures in that it does not depict either a character or a scene, whereas the drawing room scene in "The Doctor pretended to be absorbed in the song" (10.4 cm high by 15.7 cm) is quite characteristic of the formal upper-middle class and aristocratic domestic scenes of two or three characters that Du Maurier seems to have favoured.

Scanned image, caption, and commentary by Philip V. Allingham