Decorated Initial 'I'n his reminiscences the well-known illustrator, Joseph Pennell, speaks highly of Reinhart as an artist. Simon Houfe, reviewing the work of Reinhart and other late Victorians of the Vierge school, is not as appreciative: "The work of C. S. Reinhart, H. Johnson and J. R. Brown is competent in accuracy but does not have that insight which lifts a scene out of the pages of journalism and into great art" (p. 155). Reinhart, who was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in 1844, operated a studio in Paris in the 1880s, having studied at the Royal Academy, Munich, under Professors Streyhüber and Karl Otto. It was during his Parisian period that he mounted his only London exhibition (1883).

C. S. Reinhart's style in engraving is often alluded to as being of the Parisian school, whose principal, Daniel Vierge (1851-1904), arrived in the French capital in 1869.

His pen line was much purer than anything that had gone before it in book illustration, there was very little hatching, a delicate precision in every stroke and a strong sense of colouring without the use of any colour. . . . .The result was a school of pen draughtsmen who took Vierge as their exemplar. . . . . E. A. Abbey, . . . C. S. Reinhart and Howard Pyle who were typical illustrators in the new style, were featured in the pages of The Graphic by 1883 as well as illustrating classics for British publishers. [Houfe, 86]

Houfe's remarks about Reinhart's sense of colouring without the actual use of any pigmentation are particularly appropriate with respect to his plates for both the Hardy stories he illustrated in the 1880s.

An advertisement for "The Romantic Adventures of a Milkmaid" in the London Graphic for June 23rd, 1883 clearly suggests that Reinhart did not have enough of a reputation in England to help sell the periodical, dspite the fact that he had collaborated with the well-known illustrator George Du Maurier on the plates for Wilkie Collins's The New Magdalen eight years before. The advertisement does not mention Reinhart as the illustrator behind the "several engravings" (619) for the "Complete Novel . . . written by Thomas Hardy," but specifically identifies R. Caldecott as the artist behind "a Humorous Series of Coloured Sketches" that would appear in Monday, June 25th special Summer Number, Furthermore, Reinhart is the only artist not mentioned by name in "Our Illustrations": "ALL the pictures in the present Summer Number, with the exception of those which illustrate Mr. Hardy's story, and the series by Mr. Caldecott, "How Tankerville Smith too a Country Cottage, refer to the animal world [dogs and cats]." The Graphic Summer Number (pub. 25 June), 1883, p. 25.

Six years after producing the four plates for the serial publications of Hardy's "The Romantic Adventures of a Milkmaid," Reinhart collaborated with Hardy's friend Charles Parsons on a series of seven illustrations for "The First Countess of Wessex" (Harper's New Monthly Magazine, December, 1889), Parsons being responsible for the architectural plates and Reinhart completing such character studies as "At the Sow-and-Acorn" (p. 27), and "She beheld the object of her search on the horizontal bough of a cedar" (p. 29). This division of labour is consistent with Algernon Graves' classification of Reinhart's work in A Dictionary of Artists Who Have Exhibited Works in the Principal London Exhibitions from 1760 to 1893 (London: Henry Graves, 1895) as "Domestic" (p. 231) and John Denison Champlin Jr.'s classifying Reinhart as primarily a "genre painter" (p. 21). Although Reinhart exhibited works in water-colour (for example, Gathering Wood and At Close of Day, 1877) and black-and-white at the National Academy of New York, where he moved after the 1880s, he is chiefly remembered for such oil canvasses as Clearing Up, Caught Napping (1875), Reconnoitering (1876), Rebuke (1877), September Morning (1879), Old Life-Boat (1880), Coast of Normandy (1882), In a Garden (1883), Mussel Fisherwoman, Flats at Villerville (1884), Sunday (1885), English Garden, and Fisherman of Villerville (1886). Despite this enormous output in that decade, he also produced illustrations for a number of American and British periodicals in the 1880s, and exhibited at Liverpool and at the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolours. Whether he actually met or took direct instructions from Hardy for the plates on either "The Romantic Adventures of a Milkmaid" or "The First Countess of Wessex" cannot be established.

In Illustrators of the Eighteen-Sixties, Forrest Reid notes that from the late 1860s Reinhart's associate on "The First Countess of Wessex" project, George Du Maurier, collaborated with such well-known English illustrators as Edward Hughes (for Wilkie Collins's Poor Miss Finch in 1872), F. A. Fraser (for Collins's The Moonstone in 1868), and J. Mahoney (on the Dickens-Collins collaboration The Frozen Deep).

In 1875, Du Maurier illustrated one of Hardy's inferior novels, The Hand of Ethelbert, in The Cornhill, and Hardy was impressed by the results. He became friendly with Du Maurier at the Rabelais Club in 1880, and suggested to his publishers, Harper's, that Du Maurier should illustrate his

next novel. This was to be serialized in the first European edition of Harper's Monthly. . . . 'The firm was anxious that the engravings for Hardy's A Laodicean should be better than the usual work of the kind in the English magazines, and asked Hardy to suggest a first-class artist. He selected Du Maurier. [Ormond, 368]

Thus, it seems likely that through Du Maurier, Hardy's intimate professionally and personally during the period when the Rabelais Club met (1880-1889), Reinhart and Hardy should at least have communicated, if not corresponded. Further, it seems likely that Parsons received particular instructions from Hardy for the illustrations of "The First Countess of Wessex" that Parsons then imparted to Reinhart, even if Reinhart did not collaborate with the author directly. Despite of absence of hard evidence, logic seems to dictate that Reinhart and Hardy were directly communicating with respect to the drawings for the two short stories. Certainly, Reinhart would have received proofs of the story well in advance of publication so that he would have adequate time to prepare his series of four plates, the proofs probably coming directly from The Graphic rather than from Hardy.

In his plates for the American edition of The New Magdalen in 1873 C. S. Reinhart was consciously emulating Du Maurier's style and following the realistic, albeit two-dimensional, somewhat theatrical model that Du Maurier establishes in the cover plate. Reinhart's 1883 plates for Hardy's The Romantic Adventures of a Milkmaid are much more in the round; they are also much larger in scale, and therefore better able to convey a sense of a detailed background. What Reinhart seems to have learned from Du Maurier is evident in his posing of the figures and the use of background detail in The Graphic , but there, too, he shows how in the intervening years he has learned how create a sense of depth of field and top convey a prevailing mood that sweeps through all the figures in the composition. Reinhart's sense of character, tone, and mood are consonant with Hardy's style in his Milkmaid plates, whereas in his earlier New Magdalen plates we see him feeling his way as an illustrator, trying to convey character through symbolic poses, as in "Grace threw her arms round the nurse," and filling convincingly a limited domestic stage area, as in "'Tell me, one of you! he cried. What name did she give?'"


Cassis, A. F. "A Note on the Structure of Thomas Hardy's Short Stories."Colby Library Quarterly 10 (1974): 287-296.

Champlin, John Denison, Jr. Cyclopedia of Painters and Paintings. New York: Empire State, 1927. Vol. IV.

Graves, Algernon. A Dictionary of Artists Who Have Exhibited Works in the Principal London Exhibitions from 1760 to 1893. London: Henry Graves, 1895.

Greer, Russ. "To Philip Allingham." Unpublished e-mail correspondence, 25 August, 26 August, 2 September, and 17 September, 1999.

Hardy, Thomas. "The Romantic Adventures of a Milkmaid." The Graphic, Summer Number (pub. 25 June) 1883, pp. 4-25; Harper's Weekly, 23 June-4 August, 1883; Collected Short Stories, ed. F. B. Pinion. London: Macmillan, 1988. pp. 788-868.

Houfe, Simon. The Dictionary of Nineteenth-Century British Book Illustrators and Caricaturists. Woodbridge, Suffolk: Antique Collectors' Club, 1978, rev. 1996.

Lewis, Paul. "To Philip Allingham." Unpublished e-mail correspondence, 28 August and 29 August, 1999.

Ormond, Leonée. George Du Maurier. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1969.

Pennell, Joseph. The Adventures of An Illustrator Mostly in Following His Authors in America and Europe. Boston: Little, Brown, & Co., 1925.

Ray, Martin. Thomas Hardy: A Textual Study of the Short Stories. London: Ashgate, 1997.

Reid, Forrest. llustrators of the Eighteen-Sixties. 1928. New York: Dover, 1975 rpt.

Victorian Web Visual Arts Victorian Book Illustration Charles S. Reinhart

Created Novermber 12, 2000; last modified 4 April 2013