Rossetti and His Circle. 1922. WWW version and commentary by GPL.. 4 1/4 x 6 1/2 inches. Plate 3 from Max Beerbohm,
Beerbohm here mockingly repeats the common charge that Millais, the most talented of the original Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, had sold out. He does so in three elements of this caricature: First, he depicts the young painter engaged in an early characteristically daring, if awkward, attempt to combine fantasy and naturalism in Ferdinand and Ariel, a work illustrating Shakespeare's Tempest. Second, he shows the young painter catching sight of his future self after he had become a member of the philistine squierarchy devoted to hunting, fishing, and high society. Third, by placing the little girl on the elder Millais's lap, he emphasizes the painter's later pandering to popular sentiment with paintings, such as Bubbles and other works containing charming babies or young girls.
Beerbohm, Max. Rossetti and His Circle. London: William Heinemann, 1922.
Last modified 18 May 2006