By Sir JOHN EVERETT MILLAIS, Bart., P.R.A. (1829-1896)

Millais was born in Southampton, whither his family had come from Jersey. His earliest years were spent at Dinant, in Brittany, but at the age of nine he proceeded to London to embark upon his artistic career. From his earliest days his record was one of brilliant success, and though he encountered the adverse criticism which is the lot of all artists whose work shows strong individuality, his popularity with the multitude kept pace with the reputation he was building up with the learned.

That he was a painstaking workman is to be seen in his pictures, which reveal the accuracy of the Pre-Raphaelite creed, though in later years he grew to value detail more in its relation to the whole of which it formed part than for its own sake. He was too thoughtful an artist to be bound by the chains even of a new tradition, and though he was caught heart and soul by the Pre-Raphaelite doctrine and was a prominent member of that Brotherhood, formed to preach the tidings of veracious renderings of natural things by the painter, he assimilated the principles and practised them only to turn them to his own purposes as his artistic work grew to maturity.

Millais united a great understanding of his art with a wide knowledge of humanity, and these, in combination with his imaginative power, enabled him to produce those paintings which found favour with all ranks of men. Since Reynolds and Gainsborough, nobody painted youth so well, However he depicted children, Millais was always able to impart that air of beauty, dreaminess and truth which calls for insight allied to a master's brush. It is one thing to paint mature beauty and character and another to depict the glamour of immaturity; but Millais could accomplish both with equal power, as his work bears witness.

From the book "Famous Paintings" Volume 2 printed in 1913.

Large files of this public domain print are available at Stock Photos at Songs of Praise
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Online "Name the Painting"

Works of Millais in the Tate Gallery
(7 pages)

John Everett Millais
links at ArtCyclopedia

Sir John Everett Millais
at Olga's Gallery

Sir John Everett Millais
at The Victorian Web

Sir John Everett Millais
biography at Olga's Gallery

Famous Paintings in this Series

James Archer
My Great Grandmother

The Meeting


John Brett
From the Dorsetshire Cliffs

Arnesby Brown
The River Bank

Joseph Clark
Mother's Darling

John Constable
The Hay-Wain

Jean Baptiste Camille
The Fisherman's Hut

Jean Baptiste Camille
A Flood

Leonardo Da Vinci
Monna Lisa

Edouard Detaille
The Dream

Henri Fantin-Latour

Thomas Gainsborough
Queen Charlotte

Thomas Gainsborough
The Market Cart

Jean Baptiste Greuze
The Head of a Girl

Jean Baptiste Greuze

James Clark Hook
Home With the Tide

Alfred William Hunt
Windsor Castle

Josef Israels
The Shipwrecked Mariner

B.W. Leader
The Stream in Summer-time

Madame Vigee Le Brun
Portrait of the Artist

Alphonse Legros
A Canal With a Fisherman

Anton Mauve
Watering Horses

J.L.E. Meissonier
The Cavalier

Sir J.E. Millais
Speak! Speak!

Sir J.E. Mallais
My First Sermon

George Morland
The Reckoning

George Morland
The Inside of a Stable

The Immaculate Conception
of the Virgin

Alfred Parsons
When Nature Painted
All Things Gay

Ralph Peacock
The Sisters

Syndics of the
Cloth Merchants' Guild

Guido Reni
"Ecce Homo"

Sir Joshua Reynolds
Portrait of Mrs. Richard Hoare
With Her Infant Son

Briton Riviere
The Temptation
in the Wilderness

Dante Gabriel
Day Dreams

John Singer Sargent
Miss Ellen Terry
as Lady Macbeth

Lady Stanley
(Dorothy Tennant)
His First Offence

Jan Steen
Grace Before Meat

Marcus Stone
On the Road from
Waterloo to Paris

Constant Troyon
Watering Cattle

H.S. Tuke
"All Hands to the Pumps"

King Philip IV. of Spain

S.E. Waller
Sweethearts and Wives

Thomas Webster
The Smile

Famous Paintings Volume 1
Art Gallery

Famous Paintings Volume 2
Art Gallery

Art Appreciation