Tim Linnell [tim@thelinnells.freeserve.co.uk], a descendant of the artist, has kindly shared with readers of the Victorian Web his scanned text of The Life of John Linnell, published in London by Bentley and Son in 1892. George P. Landow has adapted it for html, adding links to the original text.

Book I

Introduction.
Chapter I.Birth and Parentage — Childhood and Youth — Sundays in the Country — His Father's Failure and Enlistment — First Grief — Battle of the Nile — First Attempts at Drawing — One Day's Schooling — Copying Morland — Sir Benjamin West — First Reading — Drawing in Church.
Chapter II.Early Masters — Copying at Christie's — William Varley — Introduction to John Varley — Mulready — Sir Benjamin West — Becomes a Pupil of Varley — William H. Hunt — Twickenham — Study of Nature — Cornelius Varley — Astrology — A Famous Prediction — Painting v. Boxing — Turner and Girtin.
Chapter III.A Royal Academy Student — Fuseli — Games at the Academy — Anecdotes of Fuseli — Linnell's Fellow-students — Dr. Munro — Begins to earn Money — David Wilkie — William Collins — Appreciation of Roman and Florentine Art — Mulready and Linnell — First Academy Picture — Gains a Prize of Fifty Guineas at the British Institution and a Medal at the Academy
Chapter IV. Leaves his Father's House — Begins to keep a Diary — David Wiikie — Love of the Theatre — Journey to Dover — 'St. John Preaching' — Mulready and Linnell — Kensington Gravel Pits — 'The Quoit-Players' — His Versatility — Industry.
Chapter V. Awakening of Religious Thought — Meeting with Celebrities — Divergent Views — Becomes a Baptist — John Martin — Thomas Palmer — Study of the Scriptures — A Runaway Match — Mr. Tatham — Engagement — Reading.
Chapter VI.Tour in Wales — George Lewis — Drawing and Sketches — First Sight of Mountains — Importance of Figure Drawing — Impressions of Welsh Scenery — Return to London — 'The Gravel Pits' — Return to his Father's House — 'Bayswater in 1814.'
Chapter VII.Steady Effort and Progress — Avoidance of Over-Confidence- — Por-trait-Painting — Visit to Derbyshire — Exhibition of Welsh Pictures — Windsor Forest — Visit to the Isle of Wight — Portrait of Mr. Pritchard — 'A Fall of Timber' — The Society of Painters in Oil and Water-Colours — Leading Members — Oil Copal — Letters from David Cox.
Chapter VIII.Difficulties in the Way of Marriage — Opposed to 'Clerical Interference' — Decides upon a Scottish Marriage — Carrying out his Views to their Logical Sequence — Departure for Scotland — Arrival in Edinburgh — Marriage — Visit to Glasgow — Loch Lomond — Return to Edinburgh and London — Commences Housekeeping.
Chapter IX.Increase of Portrait Commissions — Low Prices — Lady Torrens — A Love Romance — Miniature-painting — James Holmes — Anecdote of Beau Brummell — Holmes and Linnell — ' The Widows' Club — Aristocratic Commissions — Paints Princess Sophia — Visit to Southampton — Read — Misrepresentations — Read and Constable — At Windsor Castle.
Chapter X.Correspondence respecting a Picture by Giulio Romano — W. M. Rossetti and Blake's Life — Letters by Mrs. Sarah Austin — Jean Ingelow — Correspondence with William Henry Hunt — His Death.
Chapter XIAdditional Correspondence — Aphoristic Wisdom — Views on Work — Views on Art — 'Beware of Americans!' — Mr. and Mrs. Cropsey — Death of Mrs. Linnell — Premonitions of his own End — Letter from George Richmond, R.A.
Chapter XII.Refusal to become an Academician — Why was Linnell not elected R.A.? — What he himself thought — Urged by Creswick and Herbert to put down his Name — His Reasons for Objecting — Again urged by Stanfield — Royal Commission on the Academy — Correspondence between Mr. Horsley, R.A., and Linnell — Letter to the Athenaeum — Mr. Cope's Reply.
Chapter XIII.Leaning towards Quakerism — Bernard Barton, the Quaker Poet — Samuel Rogers — Abraham Cooper — Samuel Palmer — Sir David Wilkie.
Chapter XIV.Engraving — William Collins's 'Feeding the Rabbits' — John Varley's 'Burial of Saul' — Michael Angelo's Studies for the Sistine Chapel — Mrs. Aders — Blake's Style of Engraving — Amusements.
Chapter XV.Blake's Last Days — The 'Inventions' to the Book of Job — Illustrations to Dante — Letters from Blake — Visits to Hampstead — Death of Blake — Tatham — Allan Cunningham — Linnell's Opinion of Blake.
Chapter XVI.Removal to Bayswater — Linnell and Fashionable Portrait-painting — Landscape Art — Home Life and Home Labours — Engraving — Shoreham — Mr. Sheepshanks.
Chapter XVII.Friendships — Rev. E. T. Daniel — 'St. John the Baptist Preaching' — Turner — ' Noon' — Callcott — Lady Callcott — William Collins — 'Sabbath-breaking' — Opinion of Collins's Art — Constable — Ceases Membership of Keppel Street.
Chapter XVIII. Portrait-painting — Portraits of Callcott, Mulready, Collins, William Bray, Malthus, Sir Robert Peel, Archbishop Whately, Sarah Austin — Lord Jeffrey — Misunderstanding with Mulready — 'A Real Man' — Carlyle — Anecdote of — Letters by — Death of the Artist's Father — Spirit of Linnell's Art.

Book II

Chapter I.Love of the Old Masters — Copies made of their Works — 'The Four Ages' — Hook — David Roberts — French Ultramarine.
Chapter II.Growing Fame — Study of the Scriptures — Joins the Plymouth Brethren — 'The Windmill' — The Vernon — Thomas — Mr. Webster, R.A. — Mr. Gibbons — Gillott — 'The Eve of the Deluge' — 'The Last Gleam before the Storm.'
Chapter III.Making Oil-Copal Varnish — Death of William Collins, R.A. — Wilkie Collins — His Estimate of Linnell — John Everett Millais — His First Love.
Chapter IV. Settlement in Surrey — Tunbridge Wells — Balcombe — First Visit to Redhill — Purchase of Redstone Wood Estate — House Building — Further Purchase of Land — Mr. Holman Hunt — Encouragement of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood — 'I like Good Ale; I like Good Wine' — Anecdote of Gambart the Dealer.
Chapter V. Love of Nature — 'Advice from the Country' — 'Summer' — 'The World of Beauty' — Blake's Influence on Linnell — Parks — 'The Woodcutters' — 'The Hawthorn-Tree' — 'Up Rays.'
Chapter VI.Views on Art — Dialogue between the Painter and his Friend — Morality in Art — Murillo — Rubens — Rembrandt — Raphael — The Dutch School — The Italian School — Taste and Morals — Qualifications of an Art-teacher — Figure-drawing.
Chapter VII.Biblical Criticism — Early Studies — Desire for Tranquillity — Hebrew and Greek Studies — Diatheekee — Abraham's Covenant — 'The Lord's Day' — Views in regard to Sunday — Burnt-offerings.
Chapter VIII.The Painter-poet — Poetry and Art — Beauty of Redhill — Begins to write Poetry — Humour — ' Winter' — 'Spring' — 'The Soul's Struggle' — 'The Poet' — 'Gradation' — 'The Turk,' etc.
Chapter IX.Character — Early Habits — Rest and Work — Business Principles — Ready-money Payments — Avoidance of Law — Thrift — Freedom of Speech — Fox-hunting — Early Rising — Raising Prices — Views on Catholicism — Letters to his Son and to Count Guicciardini.
Chapter X.Correspondence respecting a Picture by Giulio Romano — W. M. Rossetti and Blake's Life — Letters by Mrs. Sarah Austin — Jean Ingelow — Correspondence with William Henry Hunt — His Death.
Chapter XIAdditional Correspondence — Aphoristic Wisdom — Views on Work — Views on Art — 'Beware of Americans!' — Mr. and Mrs. Cropsey — Death of Mrs. Linnell — Premonitions of his own End — Letter from George Richmond, R.A
Chapter XII.Refusal to become an Academician — Why was Linnell not elected R.A.? — What he himself thought — Urged by Creswick and Herbert to put down his Name — His Reasons for Objecting — Again urged by Stanfield — Royal Commission on the Academy — Correspondence between Mr. Horsley, R.A., and Linnell — Letter to the Athenaeum — Mr. Cope's Reply.
Chapter XIII.Linnell's Culminating Period — 'Noonday Rest' — 'The Hayfield' — 'The Moorlands' — Replica of 'The Storm in Harvest' — Biblical Subjects — 'The Disobedient Prophet' — 'The Journey to Emmaus' 'Abraham' — 'Sunset' — Scene in the Academy — The Artist and the Critic — ' Sleeping for Sorrow.'
Chapter XIV.Second Marriage — Visit to Linnell's Studio — 'The Rooks' — Habits in his Last Years — Political Opinions — Inner Vision — Studies in the Psalm — Correspondence — Spurious Copies of his Works — Curious Legal Point as regards Forgery.
Chapter XV.Cornelius Varley — His Death — Letter by Mr. Gladstone — The Chantrey Bequest — Proposal to purchase one of Linnell's Pictures — Correspondence — Last Days — Visited by Mr. Holman Hunt — Death.
Chapter XVI.Conclusion — Sixty Years a Contributor to the Royal Academy — Linnell's Fortune — His Monument in his Works — Estimate of his Powers — His Place in British Art.
Appendix.A catalogue, as nearly complete as possible, of John Linnell's landscapes and other paintings and drawings; also of his engravings. It also gives the more important portraits that he painted.


Victorian Web Homepage Visual Arts John Linnell Contents

Last modified 25 March 2002 [MB]