The Rooks' Parliament

The Rooks' Parliament by John Samuel Raven, 1829-1877. 1858. Oil on canvas; inscribed with title, "Rev. I M. Raven /painted by J. S. Raven" and with two labels of the Rev. Milville Raven, and an 1867 Exposition Universelle label inscribed, "John S Raven, Esq., / The Crops Green / Shipperton / Chester." 12 x 20 inches (30.5 x 51 cm.)

Provenance: Given by the artist to his brother, the Rev. Milville Raven, MA, FRSE, who owned it in 1878; bequeathed to his sister, Kate, and by her to her husband the artist Henry Holiday; thence by descent, to their daughter, Winifred (d. 1949) Exhibited: Paris, Exposition Universelle, 1867 as The Crops Green (99a); London, Burlington Fine Arts Club, Collected Works of the late John Samuel Raven, 1878 (12)

Born in Aberdeen, Raven was apprenticed to a lithographer at the age of thirteen; he moved to Edinburgh in 1862 and entered the Trustees Academy, before proceeding to further studies in Paris and Utrecht, where he worked in the studio of Alexander Mollinger. This picture, which was painted the year before he entered the Trustees Academy, bears witness to his exceptional precocity.


The Fine Art Society Story. Part I. London: The Fine Art Society, 2001. Catalogue Number 120.

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Last modified 29 April 2013