Recollections of Dante Gabriel Rossetti and his Circle/Notes




1. The device is time-honoured; and recently I was amused to see it exercised, by a well-known author, to explain to an obtuse hairdresser the particular fashion in which he desired his hair and beard trimmed.

2. Of Blairgowrie. He fought in the Russian-Turkish War, and was afterwards awarded a medal for bravery. Subsequently he entered the Volunteer Department of the War Office. He died on the 26th July, 1867. His marriage with a sister of the author of these Recollections was to have been solemnized two weeks later, and it may be here mentioned, as an indication of the benevolence of Rossetti's disposition, that when she came to London, for the purpose of seeing her affianced before he was buried, he made her and her mother his guests, in order to well rest themselves between the the two long journeys from Cornwall to London and back.

3. A well-known Art school, situated in Newman Street.

4. Dramatist, author, and painter, 1828—1891.

5. This play was produced at the Lyceum, at which theatre Wills was retained as dramatist, in September, 1872. Although inferior in form to its predecessor, Medea in Corinth, which contains his best work, it sprang into high favour with the public, and assisted Henry Irving to confirm the reputation he had previously achieved in The Bells. Several plays, of uneven merit, followed from Wills' pen in quick succession.

6. The son of an Englishman and a Portuguese mother, who was born in Portugal towards 1849. He was very intimate with Rossetti and his circle from 1864, but got out of favour with the circle from about 1869. He acted as Ruskin's secretary from circa 1865 to 1868, and as Rossetti's selling agent from 1872 to 1876. He possessed a keen artistic perception, and was well versed in all matters pertaining to Art. As these Recollections show, he had also a wit that was as clever as it was inimitable. He died towards 1888.

7. Mr. Seymour Kirkup, an English painter who settled in Florence circa 1824, and was ennobled as a Barone of the Italian kingdom. He was particularly known for having, towards 1840, made the discovery referred to. Throughout the greater part of his life he was a fervent spiritualist, and professed to hold intercourse with the spirit of Dante. In a letter to Rossetti, he informed him that the poet had drawn part of his own portrait and written his name under it to oblige him. He died at a great age, about 1880.

8. In the Bargello.

9. Canto xi.:

"In painting Cimabue thought that he
Should hold the field, now Giotto has the cry,
So that the other's fame is growing dim.
So has our Guido from the other taken
The glory of our tongue, and he perchance
Is born, who from the nest shall chase them both."
Longfellow's Translation.

10. No. 16, a fine old building, with an extensive garden and a frontage commanding the river, to which Rossetti removed, in the Autumn of 1862, from No. 59, Lincoln's Inn Fields. At No. 14, Chatham Place, Blackfriars Bridge (now demolished) he had lived for several years before occupying for a few months the chambers in Lincoln's Inn Fields. It constituted an eminently congenial residence for him, notwithstanding that the studio was inadequate for his needs. Originally his brother, Mr. William Michael Rossetti, Algernon Charles Swinburne, and George Meredith occupied certain rooms, but, as regards the poet and novelist, not for any great length of time; the first-named continued a partial occupant until 1873. In this house, of which he held a lease, Rossetti was domiciled until his death, although from 1871 he often stayed at Kelmscott Manor House (near Lechlade, Gloucestershire,) of which he and William Morris, the celebrated poet and art designer, were joint tenants. At Kelmscott he was entirely settled from the autumn of 1872 to the summer of 1874, seldom coming to London during that period; but at the end of that time he finally returned to London. A portrait of Mrs. Morris, which Rossetti painted, is now in the National Portrait Gallery on deposit.

11. Giov. Batt. Cipriani, painter and designer, and a member of the Royal Academy, was born in 1727, at Florence, and died in 1787, curiously enough at Chelsea.

12. Mr. W. M. Rossetti thinks that H. T. Dunn antedates his first knowledge of Rossetti. He fancies the date was 1867 instead of 1863. His own first meeting with Dunn was, he says, at Howell's house, a few days before 21st May, 1867; and this he knows from his diary as recently published, Rossetti Papers, 1862-70. He is, besides, as good as certain that Howell was never in England between an early day in 1858 and some date in 1864. At the date given by H. T. Dunn of his first meeting with Rossetti, the latter had achieved a recognized position as a painter, and enjoyed, although a limited a by no means inconsiderable repute as a poet. He was a non-exhibiting painter, however; in the early years of his artistic career he determined to absolutely refrain from exhibition, and to this resolve he remained faithful.

13.If 1867 was the actual year of the meeting, his age was then 39. "Gabriel Charles Dante Rossetti, who at an early stage of his professional career modified his name into Dante Gabriel Rossetti, was born on 12th May, 1828, at No. 38 Charlotte Street, Portland Place, London. In blood he was three-fourths Italian, and only one-fourth English; being on the father's side wholly Italian (Abruzzese), and on the mother's side half Italian (Tuscan) and half English. His father was Gabriele Rossetti, born in 1783 at Vasto, in the Abruzzi, Adriatic coast, in the then kingdom of Naples. Gabriele Rossetti (died 1854) was a man of letters, a custodian of ancient bronzes in the Museo Borbonico of Naples, and a poet; he distinguished himself by patriotic lays towards the date of the grant of a Constitution by Ferdinand I. of Naples in 1820. The King, after the fashion of Bourbons and tyrants, revoked the constitution in 1821, and persecuted the abettors of it, and Rossetti had to escape for his freedom, or perhaps even for his life. He settled in London towards 1824, married, and became Professor of Italian in King's College, London, publishing also various works of bold speculation in the way of Dantesque commentary and exposition. His wife was Frances Mary Lavinia Polidori (died 1886), daughter of Gaetano Polidori (died 1853), a teacher of Italian and literary man who had in early youth been secretary to the poet Alfieri, and who published various books, including a complete translation of Milton's poems. Frances Polidori was English on the side of her mother, whose maiden name was Pierce."—Preface, by Mr. W. M. Rossetti, to The Collected Works of Dante Gabriel Rossetti.

14."The prevailing expression of" his "face" was "that of a fiery and dictatorial mind concentrated into repose."—Ibid. In the February of 1862, Rossetti was overwhelmed with grief and dismay by the death of his wife." He was always and essentially of a dominant turn, in intellect and temperament a leader. He was impetuous and vehement, and necessarily therefore impatient; easily angered, easily appeased, although the embittered feelings of his later years obscured this amiable quality to some extent . . . in family affection warm and equable and (except in relation to our mother, for whom he had a fondling love) not demonstrative. Never on stilts in matters of the intellect, or of aspiration, but steeped in the sense of beauty, and loving, if not always practising, the good . . . and anti-scientific to the marrow. Throughout his youth and early manhood I considered him to be markedly free from vanity, though certainly well-equipped in pride; the distinction between these two tendencies was less definite in his closing years . . . good-natured and hearty without being complaisant or accommodating; reserved at times, yet not haughty; desultory enough in youth, diligent and persistent in maturity; self-centred always, and brushing aside whatever traversed his purpose or his bent."—Preface, by Mr. W. M. Rossetti, to the Collected Works.

In 1870 Rossetti published his volume of Poems. c< For some considerable while it was hailed with general and lofty praise, chequered by only moderate stricture or demur; but late in 1871 Mr. Robert Buchanan published, under a pseudonym, in the Contemporary Review, a very hostile article, named The Fleshly School of Poetry, attacking the poems on literary and more especially on moral grounds. . . . The assault produced on Rossetti an effect altogether disproportionate to its intrinsic importance; indeed, it developed in his character an excess of sensitiveness and of distempered brooding which his nearest relatives and friends had never before surmised. . . . Unfortunately, there was in him already only too much of morbid material on which this venom of detraction was to work. For some years the state of his eyesight had given very grave cause for apprehension, he himself fancying from time to time that the evil might end in absolute blindness, a fate with which our father had been formidably threatened in his closing years. From this or other causes insomnia had ensued, coped with by far too free a use of chloral, which may have begun towards the beginning of 1870. In the summer of 1872 he had a dangerous crisis of illness; and from that time forward, but more especially from the middle of 1874, he became secluded in his habits of life and often depressed, fanciful, and gloomy."—Ibid.

15."The appearance of my brother was to my eye rather Italian than English, though I have more than once heard it said that there was nothing observable to bespeak foreign blood. He was of rather low, middle stature, say five feet seven and a-half, like our father; and, as the years advanced, he resembled our father not a little in a characteristic way, yet with highly obvious divergences. Meagre in youth, he was at times decidedly fat in mature age. The complexion, clear and warm, was also dark, but not dusky or sombre. The hair was dark and somewhat silky; the brow grandly spacious and solid; the full-sized eyes blueish-grey; the nose shapely, decided, and rather projecting, with an aquiline tendency, and large nostrils, and perhaps no detail in the face was more noticeable at a first glance than the very strong indentation at the spring of the nose below the forehead; the mouth moderately well shaped, but with a rather thick and unmoulded underlip; the chin unremarkable; the line of the jaw, after youth was passed, full-rounded and sweeping; the ears well-formed and rather small than large. His hips were wide, his hands and feet small; the hands very much those of the artist or author type, white, delicate, plump, and soft as a woman's. His gait was resolute and rapid, his general aspect compact and determined. . . . Some people regarded Rossetti as eminently handsome; few, I think, would have refused him the epithet of well-looking. . . . He wore moustaches from early youth, shaving his cheeks: from 1870, or thereabouts, he grew whiskers and beard, moderately full and auburn tinted, as well as moustaches. His voice was deep and harmonious; in the reading of poetry, remarkably rich, with rolling swell and musical cadence."—Ibid.

16. This painting does not represent the legendary and supernatural being named Lilith. It is an oil painting called Lady Lilith, to intimate that the work should be understood as depicting the allurements of physical beauty uncombined with moral beauty. Rossetti made of it some water-colour replicas and illustrated the picture by the following sonnet, which is now known as Body's Beauty:

"Of Adam's first wife, Lilith, it is told
(The witch he loved before the gift of Eve)
That, ere the snake's, her sweet tongue could deceive,
And her enchanted hair was the first gold.
And still she sits, young while the earth is old,
And, subtly of herself contemplative,
Draws men to watch the bright web she can weave,
Till heart and body and life are in its hold.

"The rose and poppy are her flowers; for where
Is he not found, O Lilith, whom shed scent
And soft-shed kisses and soft sleep shall snare?
Lo! as that youth's eyes burned at thine, so went
Thy spell through him, and left his straight neck bent
And round his heart one strangling golden hair."

17. That Adam had a wife so named before the creation of Eve. According to Rabbinical mythology, she was changed into a night spectre, especially hostile to newly-born infants. The legend had a peculiar fascination for Rossetti. He introduces the supernatural Lilith into his poem Eden Bower.

18.Walpurgis Night. Scene 31.

Faust.And who is that?
Mephistopheles.Do thou observe her well.
That's Lilith.
Meph.Adam's first damosel.
Be on thy guard against her lovely hair,
That tire of hers in which she peerless shines!
When with its charm a youngster she entwines,
She will not soon release him. So beware!
Webb's Translation.

19.Mr. William M. Rossetti has already expressed his own opinion that the alteration referred to was detrimental to the work. Fortunately a photograph of the painting in its original state exists. When Rossetti re-painted the face, he employed a different model.

20.This picture has often been called the Dying Beatrice, but not with strict correctness. Its true title is as given. It represents Beatrice in a trance, which is to be understood as symbolically suggesting death, but she is not intended to be really dead, nor yet dying.

21.She had at an earlier date been Mrs. Cowper-Temple. Mr. W. M. Rossetti, in speaking of the extremely cordial relations which subsisted between his brother and the principal purchasers of his pictures, expressly mentions this lady as one of his friends.

22.See Note 12. February, 1862. After a lengthy engagement, Rossetti, in the spring of 1860, married Elizabeth Eleanor Siddal, originally a milliner's assistant, and the daughter of a Sheffield cutler. As will be seen, their wedded life was of short duration. She had given birth to a still-born infant. Miss Siddal was gifted with considerable artistic and poetic fancy herself. She produced several water-colours and designs which, albeit based upon her husband's style, display genuine originality and some considerable skill.

23.This is a picture of a single female half-figure, now in the possession of Mr. T. H. Ismay.

24.Poet, engraver, and painter, 1757-1827. In reciting the names of those poets whose influence tended to nurture the mind of his brother, and helped to educe its own poetic endowment, Mr. W. M. Rossetti mentions the name of Blake as receiving his peculiar meed of homage.

25.W. M. Rossetti has kindly drawn attention to the fact that this book contained a number of miscellaneous designs by no means limited to such as apply to the Songs of Innocence. There were also a great many writings in verse and prose in it.

26. 1847.

27.Biographer, 1828-61. Wrote the Life of Blake. Rossetti was intimate with and had a deep esteem for him. He died as he was approaching the end of his excellent and now fully-appreciated labours on the Life, which was originally published, with selections from Blake's poems and other writings in 1863. Another edition appeared in 1880.

28.The author of these Recollections errs in assigning a collaboratorship to Rossetti. Rossetti supplied Gilchrist with some valuable material, but not with any contributory writing of his own. Having died before the book was published, but not before it was substantially completed, his widow, Anne Gilchrist, prepared it for the press. But as she considered it expedient to avail herself of Rossetti's assistance in certain defined portions of the work, he undertook all the editing of Blake's writings in prose and verse which form Vol. II. He is also credited with certain passages in Vol. I. In the Collected Works of Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Mr. W. M. Rossetti gives the remarks of his brother upon the poems; preceded by the supplementary chapter which he made to the Life, and followed by his comments upon the designs to the Book of Job, and upon certain points connected with the designs to the Jerusalem. The large majority of these observations appeared in the original edition; part of the Jerusalem section belongs only to that of 1880. A few of the opening phrases in the supplementary chapter must, Mr. W. M. Rossetti thinks, be Gilchrist's own, but he has not been at the pains of detaching them. Nothing else of any substantial bulk or importance was, he says, written by his brother for Gilchrist's book.

29. This statement goes too far. At a time when he knew nothing about the MS. book, nor yet about Rossetti, Gilchrist undertook to write the Life, and wrote a good deal of it. Afterwards, knowing Rossetti and the book, he fairly completed it, but not absolutely, as he died suddenly.

30. By Colonna, circa 1490.

31. Mr. W. M. Rossetti observes here, that the designs seem quite unlike Botticelli's, and that Giovanni Bellini has, with less obvious improbability, more generally been suggested. His own view, however, is that connoisseurs regard the authorship of the designs as extremely uncertain.

32. Poet and critic, author of Fine Art, &c., the third child and second son of Gabriele Rossetti, born in 1829. There were four children altogether, all honourably known in connection with Literature and Art, namely, Maria Francesca, author of A Shadow of Dante, Dante Gabriel, William Michael, and Christina, the author of Goblin Market, The Prince's Progress, and other works in prose and verse.

33.Painter and etcher, 1835-1903. President of the Society of British Artists 1886-1888. An artist friend of Rossetti's.

34.Specimens of China porcelain in which figures of slim Chinese ladies are painted. Mr. W. M. Rossetti points out that the correct phrase is "Lange leises"—i.e., long (tall or slim) damsels—this being the name given to porcelain of the kind by the Dutch. It is written in the manuscript of the Recollections as printed, and no doubt the proper phrase has often been so corrupted. Possibly here a witticism of Whistler's may be detected.

35.Mr. W. M. Rossetti doubts these figures. He rather thinks that Rossetti gave more than £120 for the pair (say £200), and his belief is that on their being sold by him to the dealer he had bought them of, he only received the same price which he had given.

36.In 1848, Rossetti co-operated with two of his fellow-students in painting, John Everett Millais and William Holman Hunt his leading colleagues and with the sculptor, Thomas Woolner, in forming the so-called Præ-Raphaelite Brotherhood. There were three other members, James Collinson, Frederic George Stephens, and William Michael Rossetti. The words of the latter will best describe the movement: "A great deal of discussion has arisen from time to time as to what were the motives of these young men in forming their association, and why they called themselves Præ-Raphaelites . . . In the briefest terms . . . the movement was partly one of protest and partly one of performance; protest against the general intellectual flimsiness and vapid execution of British Art in those days, and performance in the way of serious personal thought in invention and design, and serious personal minute study of Nature as the solid substratum of all genuine execution. The name "Præ-Raphaelite" was adopted, not because the young men wanted to imitate early and immature works of art (which, in fact, they never did), but to indicate that they would not be hidebound by any rules or traditions, Raphaelite or Post-Raphaelite, which they might not find ratified by visible nature and their own minds. From the very beginning of the movement, the men painted in styles differing the one from the other, although with some common principles of work to found upon; and after some four years of association they sundered, each on his own track. Millais became justly celebrated for facile and striking realism, somewhat obvious in point of thought; and Holman Hunt for strenuous well-pondered purpose and unflinching precision of execution. Rossetti, on the other hand, pursued beauty as his main object, combined with ideal or symbolic suggestiveness.

37.Painter, 1829-1896; A.R.A., 1853; R.A., 1863; P.R.A., 1896; created a baronet, 1885. As already implied, he and Rossetti were fellow-students together at the Royal Academy—Millais in the Painting School, Rossetti in the Antique School. He was on terms of unrestricted intimacy with Rossetti in youth, as were all the Præ-Raphaelites, but, owing to death and other causes, Rossetti lost sight of all of them, except Stephens, eventually.

38.Painter, 1827. Also a fellow-student of Rossetti's at the Royal Academy, and the third Præ-Raphaelite.

39.Sculptor and poet, 1826; A.R.A., 1871; R.A., 1876; Professor of Sculpture in the Royal Academy, 1877-79; the fourth Præ-Raphaelite.

40. Poet, painter, and etcher, 1811. Author of Poems by a Painter, &c. His autobiographical notes were published in 1892, soon after his death.

41. Painter, 1821-93. Alluded to by Mr. W. M. Rossetti as, first and foremost, his brother's chief intimate through life, "on the unexhausted resources of whose affection and converse he drew incessantly for long years." Ford Madox Brown bore an important part in directing Rossetti's studies, and greatly influenced for good his subsequent life. They became acquainted a few months before the time the Præ-Raphaelite scheme was put forward. Although he did not think fit to join the Brotherhood in any direct or complete sense—because he disbelieved in the advantages of cliques—he bore a weighty part in supporting the movement, and did more than any other to sway its members. And he always felt a keen sympathy towards the aspirations he largely assisted to mould. The friendship existing between Brown and Rossetti, which almost amounted to brotherhood, and extended over the latter's after life, was formed in this way. In March, 1848, Rossetti, who had been profoundly struck with his work, wrote Brown for permission to attend his studio as a pupil, warmly extolling his paintings, and adding that if he ever did anything on his own account, it would be under the influence of his inspiration. Brown courteously granted the request which had been made, and accordingly Rossetti entered his studio, not as a paying pupil, but as a friend. They were ultimately separated by Brown's removal to Manchester for the purpose of executing the frescos in the Town Hall there.

42. Poet and musician, born somewhere towards 1850, and living abroad, whither he went several years ago. About 1875, he published a volume of poems which, although rather odd, display much ability. He then became more noted in musical matters, and was a semi-professional vocalist.

43.The Liverpool shipowner, of Prince's Gate, now deceased. He was one of the principal purchasers of Rossetti's pictures. Rossetti stood towards him in an extremely friendly relation. Whistler painted for Leyland the famous "Peacock Room," and then quarrelled with him.

44.The taste of the collector, by which Rossetti was always strongly influenced, asserted itself at an early age.

45.One of the famous "Thames Series" of plates, a series which contains the finest etched plates of modern times. Whistler came to London about 1862, and, on discovering the artistic charms of Chelsea, he also went to reside there.

46.An acknowledged and daring epigrammatist. Whistler's sayings were always a source of unbounded amusement to his friends. "Why bring in Velasquez?" is perhaps the most characteristic of his replies, which was addressed to a gushing lady who had insisted on assuring him that he and Velasquez were the greatest painters of this or any age.

47.Art and miscellaneous writer, 1819-1901. In after times he became an eloquent and stedfast advocate of the Præ-Raphaelites. Rossetti was extremely intimate with and derived much help from him in his professional career.

48.Poet, 1812-1889. In enumerating the various poetic influences to which Rossetti was subject, his brother says: "Lastly came Browning, and for a time, like the serpent-rod of Moses, swallowed up all the rest. This was still at an early age of life; for I think the year 1847 cannot certainly have been passed before my brother was deep in Browning. The readings or fragmentary recitations of Bells and Pomegranates, Paracelsus, and, above all, Sordello, are something to remember from a now distant past" (Preface to the Collected Works}. Browning's poems furnished Rossetti with subjects. His first water-colour painting, an illustration to Browning's Laboratory, was painted as early as 1849. About the year following, Rossetti made the personal acquaintance of Browning, of whose poetry he was one of the first appreciators, and a genuine and friendly intercourse, extending over several years, ensued. One day, Rossetti saw in the British Museum Pauline, which had been published anonymously; he identified it with Browning, and ventured to write to the great poet to tell him so. He received a cordial response, and thus their friendship came about.

49.Poet and critic, 1837, a staunch, fervent, and sympathetic friend of Rossetti's. As already noted, he originally occupied certain apartments at No. 16, Cheyne Walk. Rossetti first became aquainted with him in 1857, when he was known among his intimates to be a youth of brilliant promise. He rose towards celebrity from 1861, in which year his first poetic volume was published. When the poet-painter and Edward Burne-Jones were at work on the paintings at the Union Club, Oxford, Swinburne entered the room with Mr. (afterwards Dr.) George Birkbeck Hill, who introduced him to Rossetti. For Swinburne Rossetti had a very friendly and affectionate feeling, which continued undiminished up to the latter's death, although he lost sight of him towards 1872.

50.Poet, artist, and socialist, 1834-96. Another true, ardent, and sympathetic friend of Rossetti's. They became acquainted through Burne-Jones and, as in the case of Swinburne, Rossetti had a warm and friendly feeling for Morris, which continued right up to his death, although they did not meet after 1877. As already noticed, they jointly occupied Kelmscott Manor, and, as mentioned in the Recollections, they were for some time associated in business.

51.Poet, 1809-1892. According to his brother, in the mind of Rossetti when he was quite a youth and hardly out of boyhood, Tennyson reigned along with Keats, and Edgar Poe and Coleridge along with Tennyson.

52.This is a somewhat well-known incident, the details of which have already been accurately published by Mr. W. M. Rossetti and others. The latter thinks there was one other person present possibly Ford Madox Brown.

53.The original sketch, as made on the spot, was presented to Browning, and, it is presumed, is now owned by his son. Rossetti made one or two copies, and one version is in the possession of his brother.

54.Rossetti made a very large number of drawings of her from 1850 onwards, and especially between 1853 and 1857. In the Victoria and Albert Museum there is one in pen-and-ink, in which she is depicted standing.

55.It was a long-cherished project of Rossetti's to bring out a volume of original poems in or about 1862, but its fulfilment was delayed until 1870 through a strange and romantic incident. His affection for his wife was very deep, and when, after a short period of married life, she died, he was so distraught with grief that he resolved to sacrifice his scheme to her memory, and accordingly buried in her coffin the MSS. of the poems. He was pressed in subsequent years to have them exhumed, and as time went by, he was persuaded that the sacrifice was neither necessary nor desirable. In 1869 the manuscripts were recovered and published in the following year. Howell undertook the task of exhumation; all was found as originally left, although the manuscripts had to undergo a long process of disinfection before they could be made use of.

56.Morris, Marshall, Faulkner, and Co.

57.Painter, 1833-98, A.R.A. 1885, created a Baronet, 1894. A staunch and sympathetic comrade of Rossetti's, whose influence was always strong upon him. He originally intended to enter the Church, but coming under the sway of Rossetti at Oxford, he abandoned the idea and adopted painting as a profession. Rossetti's disposition towards him was always cordial and affectionate, and he kept in close touch with him almost to the last.

58.It is uncertain where this series exists in glass.

59.The designs of the Parable were executed for the church of S. Martin-on-the-Hill, Scarborough. The series begins with the Labourers of the Vineyard, and ends with the procession of the rebellious vineyard workers to punishment.

60.Some of the St. George and the Dragon series, perhaps all, were turned into water-colour pictures (and bought by the late Mr. Geo. Rae, of Birkenhead); but Mr. W. M. Rossetti is strongly of opinion that this was not done with the Parable series.

61.Into his first exhibited painting, hereafter noted, Rossetti introduced the portraits of his mother and his sister Christina. In the first of his Three Designs from Tennyson's Poems—"Mariana in the South"—the face of his wife is seen; again, with that of his sister, in the second—"King Arthur 'watched by weeping Queens' in the vale of Avalon"; and again in the third—" S. Cecilia." Queen Guinevere (now in the Dublin National Gallery) is the first, or very nearly the first, head that Rossetti drew from Mrs. Morris.

62.Mr. W. M. Rossetti here remarks that this is not quite correct. The person who drops the stone is of quite different physique from Morris, he says, and bears some resemblance to Val Prinsep. The head of Morris occurs, however, in the same design; he is putting his head out through a wicket, wearing a smile of hypocritical civility, whilst the other man, his accomplice, casts down the stone.

63.The painter's brother fails to recognise Morris in the last of the set at all.

64.A Belgian who was famous as a picture dealer in London from circa 1850 until 1875, when he retired and became Consul for Spain at Nice. He died at a great age about 1902, and his pictures, &c., were recently sold at Christie's.

65."Among the works of importance between which and the poems no direct connection can be traced, a few stand prominently forward. Formost amongst these is this triptych. The various divisions of this are curious as exemplifying the boldness with which, at this period, and subsequently, Rossetti threw off the trammels of Præ-Raphaelitism, and, while adhering to the mysticism, the recurrent phases of which mark his entire life, hesitated not to employ costume and effects which commended themselves by picturesqueness and beauty rather than by archaic correctness. In richness of colouring and in impressiveness this work remains one of the most striking oil paintings of Rossetti's middle period." Life of Dante Gabriel Rossetti, by Joseph Knight.

66.It has been pointed out by Mr. W. M. Rossetti, that this Gallery was not instituted by the Præ-Raphaelites in 1849, but that it began a year or two earlier, and had nothing to do with the Præ-Raphaelites, except that Rossetti and Ford Madox Brown exhibited there two or three times.

67.The full title of this picture is the Girlhood of Mary Virgin. It was painted late in 1848 and in the Spring of 1849, and shewn in the latter year. The first completed oil picture of Rossetti's is a head of Christina Rossetti (June, 1848); then began the Girlhood of Mary Virgin, and then, before this was finished, came the head of Gabriele Rossetti (October, 1848). The tutor of the B. Virgin (it is the Annunciation lily, of course, which she is embroidering) in the picture under notice, is not S. Elizabeth, but S. Anna, the mother of Mary; in the background occurs her father, S. Joachim. The head of the B. Virgin is that of Rossetti's sister Christina; that of S. Anna was done from his mother. In this picture the mystic adoration and faith of mediævalism is wonderfully and finely realized.

68.Cordelia at the Bedside of LearRossetti sat for the head of the fool. The picture now belongs to Mrs. Rae, of Birkenhead.

69.This bed, in which Rossetti was born, had belonged to his father and mother, but was now the property of the painter.

70.First published in the early months of 1850. It was brought out by the Præ-Raphaelites with the cooperation of some friends, and afterwards called Art and Poetry.

71.The first verses and the first prose published by Rossetti. He contributed various other poems also.

72.And the Blessed Damozel likewise.

73.Poems by Dante Gabriel Rossetti (London, 1870), not the Ballads and Sonnets (1881), which Henry T. Dunn evidently had in mind.

74. Painter, and one of the Præ-Raphaelite Brotherhood, his membership of which, however, after a short time he resigned.

75.A disciple of the Præ-Raphaelites, and an artist of considerable skill, who died prematurely.

76.A leading Greek family in London. Constantine Ionides bought many pictures by Rossetti and others, and has left the whole collection to the Victoria and Albert Museum.

77.Solicitor and picture buyer, who died towards 1887.

78.Now Earl of Carlisle; an amateur painter and a friend of Burne-Jones.

79.An early associate of Rossetti's; he first knew Rossetti towards 1852, and was one of the earliest purchasers of his works. He was at first studying as an architect, but changed to landscape-painting, and produced many excellent water-colour landscapes, fine in feeling and colour, without much ambition in subject. He was a member of the old Water-colour Society and died towards 1900.

80.Etcher, painter, and caricaturist, 1792-1878.

81.Landscape painter; one of the first to follow the Præ-Raphaelite lead. He died towards 1890, and has a picture in the National British Gallery.

82.Rossetti was always intensely superstitious in grain. According to his brother, any writing about devils, spectres, or the supernatural generally, whether in poetry or prose, had a fascination for him; at one time—say 1844—his supreme delight was the blood-curdling romance of Maturin, Melmoth the Wanderer.

83.According to the same authority, Rossetti, from an early period of life, had a large circle of friends, and could always have commanded any amount of intercourse with any number of ardent or kindly well-wishers. He was constant and helpful as a friend, where he perceived constancy to be reciprocated; free-handed and heedless of expenditure, whether for himself or others; extremely natural, and therefore totally unaffected in tone and manner. He was very generally and very greatly liked by persons of extremely diverse character, and it might almost be said that no one ever disliked him.

84.A distinguished painter and designer, still living at an advanced age. He has done some excellent portraits and fine woodcut designs. One of his principal works is an oil picture, Medea.

85.Journalist and miscellaneous writer, 1828-1895.

86.LL.D. Poet and dramatist, 1819-1890.

87.Rossetti was keenly alive to the laughable as well as the grave or solemn side of things, and had on the whole a sufficiency of high spirits. These were much affected in and after the Spring of 1872, in consequence of the publication of Robert Buchanan's attack in pamphlet form, and the exaggerated or morbid ideas which Rossetti conceived on the subject.


89.Still alive; now Mrs. Guppy Volckman.

90.Of Barnard Castle.

91.An extremely celebrated medium, now deceased. A famous action was heard against him, which he lost. Mr. W. M. Rossetti does not think his brother ever saw him.

92.An Austrian, of early middle age at this time, who spoke English well, and who, it will be seen, gave some surprising demonstrations at Rossetti's house. He does not appear to have been professionally connected with spiritualism. Mr. W. M. Rossetti saw him once at Cheyne Walk.

93.Sir Coutts Lindsay, founder of the Grosvenor Gallery.

94.Poet and critic, the author of Aylwin (b. 1836). His "intellectual companionship and incessant assiduity of friendship did more than anything else towards assuaging the discomforts and depression of his closing years," writes Mr. W. M. Rossetti, in reference to Mr. Watts-Dunton's association with his brother. They became acquainted through Dr. Hake, the poet, and Rossetti died in his friend's presence, April 9th, 1882. Mr. W. M. Rossetti considers that it must be through a defect of memory Mr. Watts-Dunton is stated to have been present at this mesmeric entertainment. That affair, it seems to him, was probably not later than 1871, and Mr. Watts-Dunton was not known to Rossetti until late in 1872.

95.Sir Richard Burton, 1821-1890.

96.Of the "Road Murder." She was the daughter of a man reported to be a natural son of the Duke of Kent, and therefore a half-niece of Queen Victoria. At the age of fifteen or so she murdered, out of spite, a brother (or half brother) of hers, aged perhaps three. She was not known to be the murderess, but after some four or five years she confessed it, having come under religious influences. She pleaded guilty and was sentenced to death, but the sentence was commuted. When sentenced, she was, of course, regarded as sane; it is doubtful if she was ever considered otherwise or detained at Broadmoor.

97.10th June, 1840.

98.He made a considerable reputation as a painter towards 1845. At one time he was confined in Bedlam, where Mr. W. M. Rossetti once saw him.

99.Mathematician and astrologer, 1527-1608.

100.It is implied here that the name of the poem is Beryl. This is not the case. The title is Rose Mary. The author of these Recollections refers to the Beryl-Songs so entitled, which follow the three divisions of the poem, concerning which Mr. W. M. Rossetti writes: "This poem was written in the early autumn of 1871. The Beryl-Songs are a later addition, say 1879. The very general opinion has been that they were better away, and I cannot but agree with it. I have heard my brother say that he wrote them to show that he was not incapable of the daring rhyming and rhythmical exploits of some other poets. As to this point, readers must judge. It is at any rate true, that in making the word 'Beryl' the pivot of his experiment, a word to which there are the fewest possible rhymes, my brother weighted himself heavily."—Notes to Collected Works of Dante Gabriel Rossetti.

"Rose Mary is regarded by many as the author's highest poetic accomplishment. It is, at least, a magnificent ballad, using, with unrivalled effect a mystical Eastern conception, and charged with the subtlest and the most poetical significance."—Life of Dante Gabriel Rossetti, by Joseph Knight.

101.She is represented in Hades, holding the pomegranate, of which (according to mythological legend) she ate a single seed, and was thereby interdicted from returning to earth. Of this subject, there are two oil-paintings, about equally successful.

102.Rossetti painted two rather large oil pictures from his poem The Blessed Damozel—one for Mr. Graham, circa 1875, the other for Mr. Leyland, circa 1878. In the earlier and better of the two, groups of lovers re-united in heaven are introduced in the background, but not in the other.

103. Daughter of Priam, King of Troy, who possessed the gift of prophecy. Apollo ordained that she should be discredited. She was captured, on the fall of Troy, by Agamemnon, and executed at Mycenæ by Clytemnestra. The picture shows Hector sallying forth to his last fatal battle, and his sister prophesying his death. Helen, who is arming Paris, is incensed at some words which Cassandra has let fall concerning her. As the princess, though she always presaged the truth, was never credited, her brother Deiphobus is endeavouring to silence her.

104. Mr. W. M. Rossetti points out that the date of this incident could not be later than 1868 or so, and that the Proserpine picture was not painted until 1872 or 1873, and cannot have been at Cheyne Walk till late in 1874. After it was painted, he doubts if Swinburne was ever once in the house, and says the same remark applies still more strongly to The Blessed Damozel picture. There might, however, he adds, have been some drawings of both subjects in the studio, and it is to these, perhaps, the author of these Recollections refers.

105. Painter, b. 1841, d. 1902.

106. See Note 28.

107. Edward Hughes, painter, and nephew of Arthur Hughes, another good painter.

108. The Rev. Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, b. 1832, d. 1898.

109. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, American poet, 1807.