A Courtyard at Abbeville
Source: Facing Works, 14.388.
In Notes on Prout and Hunt, Ruskin states that he made the "little picture":
in 1858 (by my own setting of the camera), in the courtyard of one of the prettiest yet remaining fragments of fifteenth-century domestic buildings in Abbeville. The natural vine leaves consent in grace and glow with the life of the old wood carving; and thought the modern white procelain image ill replaces the revoluition-deposed Madonna, and only pedestals of saints, and canopies, are left on the propping beams of the gateway — and though the casque, and cooper's tools, and gardener's spade and ladder are little in accord in what was once stately in the gate and graceful in the winding stair — the declining shadows of the past mingle with the hardship of the present day in no unkindly sadness; and the little angle of courtyard, if tenderly painted in the depression of its fate, has enough still to occupy as much of our best thought as maybe modestly claimed for his picture by any master not of the highest order. (14.388)
Ruskin, John. Works, "The Library Edition." eds. E. T. Cook and Alexander Wedderburn. 39 vols. London: George Allen, 1903-1912.
Last modified August 2003