By William Henry Gore

By William Henry Gore R.B.A. (1880-1927)
In the Guildhall Art Gallery, London

"'Listed" is a popular painting in the best sense of that term - popular in its direct appeal to the heart as well as to the brain, popular in its simple composition and rich colouring.

Mr. Gore received his early art training in the Lambeth School of Art, from which he entered the Royal Academy schools in 1880. In 1882 his work was first exhibited in the Academy, and for nearly twenty years after that his pictures appeared regularly on its walls, though of late years he has exhibited but occasionally. In all he has shown some thirty pictures there, and many of these (including "Forgive us our Trespasses" and "The End of the Tale") have achieved popularity as prints.

"'Listed" was exhibited in the Royal Academy in 1885, and was painted in the low-lying meadows of the Kennet Valley, just below Newbury, the artist's native place. The subject tells its own story, though perhaps it is not quite so evident to-day as when it was first shown, as the custom, then prevalent, of wearing ribbons in the cap on enlistment, has fallen into disuse,

"For a soldier I 'listed, to grow great in fame.
And be shot at for sixpence a day."

The man, brave in his trappings of glory, is parting from the woman, whose thought, doubtless, is of the danger of his calling. So well is the pathos of the idea expressed that, soon after it was painted, the late Stacy Marks, R.A., who was a member of the Council of the Royal Academy, confessed that the picture affected him to tears. To have earned such a tribute from a distinguished critic who was himself a painter, is an achievement of which few artists can boast, and of which any painter, however popular, might well be proud.

From the book "Famous Paintings" printed in 1913.

Large files of this public domain print are available at Stock Photos at Songs of Praise
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