Decorative Initial MacDonald relates to the arts in at least two obvious ways. First of all, he was a friend of Ruskin and the Pre-Raphaelites, and his work shares some of their emphasis upon imagination, fantasy, and unorthodox symbolism. In particular, Phantastes, Lilith, and some of his children's books have much in common with the Victorian fairy painting of J. Noel Paton and similar artists.

Second, his work has provided inspiration for artists and illustrators since its first publication. His famous children's books were illustrated, for example, by Arthur Hughes, one of the Pre-Raphaelite circle. Almost four decades after Phantastes, a Faerie Romance first appeared, Chatto & Windus republished it with fine illustrations by Bernard Sleigh.

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Last modified 27 June 2007