The Exterior of the Old College

Clarkson Stanfield's second plate is enclosed by textual description of the same scene, above and below. As in Tenniel's double-plate, the figure of Redlaw is distinguished by his large (seventeenth-century Puritan) hat. The mood of the scene is sombre and tranquil, the white of the snow on the roof contrasting picturesquely with the shadowed portions of the courtyard. The scene depicted is actually several pages further on, for it involves both Redlaw and the Boy. Seen as a series, Stanfield's plates are moving us from the limits of human habitation (the lighthouse) towards the centre of urban civilisation, not merely the metropolis or the university, but the extended family of his final offering, "The Christmas Party in the Great Dinner Hall" (page 188). The skeletal trees (left), the shadows, and the night sky impart an appropriate gloominess as Redlaw's "gift" continues to be diffused

Created 19 October 2004

Last modified 29 December 2019