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Metaphysical Parenting

James Wood: Edward P. Jones, 21 June 2007

All Aunt Hagar’s Children 
by Edward P. Jones.
Harper Perennial, 399 pp., £7.99, March 2007, 978 0 00 724083 8
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... own boredom and futility that they could be comprehended in one glance.’ Comprehended by whom? Edward P. Jones is unfashionably interested in fate and endings, and likes to gaze at the wide horizons of his characters’ extinctions. His remarkable novel, The Known World (2003), owes something to The Mayor of ...

Angela and Son

Dan Jacobson, 2 August 1984

Inside Outsider: The Life and Times of Colin MacInnes 
by Tony Gould.
Chatto, 261 pp., £12.50, September 1983, 0 7011 2678 7
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... his life took place before he was born. He was the great-grandchild of the Pre-Raphaelite painter, Edward Burne-Jones, and was thus connected with both the Kipling and the Baldwin families; he was the grandson of an Oxford Professor of Poetry (of no great distinction, it must be admitted); and the son of Angela Thirkell, the ...

‘We would rather eat our cake than merely have it’

Rosemary Hill: Victorian men and women, 4 October 2001

A Circle of Sisters: Georgiana Burne-Jones, Agnes Poynter and Louisa Baldwin 
by Judith Flanders.
Penguin, 392 pp., £17.99, September 2001, 0 670 88673 4
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The Hated Wife: Carrie Kipling 1862-1939 
by Adam Nicolson.
Short Books, 96 pp., £4.99, May 2001, 0 571 20835 5
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Victorian Diaries: The Daily Lives of Victorian Men and Women 
edited by Heather Creaton.
Mitchell Beazley, 144 pp., £14.99, February 2001, 1 84000 359 6
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... Macdonald, an independent woman tied by an early marriage to the demanding, fickle, hypochondriac Edward Burne-Jones, who first took sick on their wedding night – the intended honeymoon was in Paris, but they got no further than Chester. The Macdonald family’s origins were modest. They were from Methodist stock, their ...

Fancy Dress

Peter Campbell: Millais, Burne-Jones and Leighton, 15 April 1999

Millais: Portraits 
by Peter Funnell and Malcolm Warner.
National Portrait Gallery, 224 pp., £35, February 1999, 1 85514 255 4
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John Everett Millais 
by G.H. Fleming.
Constable, 318 pp., £20, August 1998, 0 09 478560 0
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Edward Burne-JonesVictorian Artist-Dreamer 
by Stephen Wildman and John Christian.
Abrams, 360 pp., £48, October 1998, 0 8109 6522 4
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Frederic Leighton: Antiquity, Renaissance, Modernity 
edited by Tim Barringer and Elizabeth Prettejohn.
Yale, 332 pp., £40, March 1999, 0 300 07937 0
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... are among the best made for 19th-century fiction), he was at one with his public. Burne-Jones, who has had a better posthumous press and prices, was a bohemian. He was making beautiful paintings when you could call a painting ‘beautiful’ in much the same way you could a girl, a horse or a grove of trees. Beautiful pictures were of beautiful ...

Christina and the Sid

Penelope Fitzgerald, 18 March 1982

Christina Rossetti: A Divided Life 
by Georgina Battiscombe.
Constable, 233 pp., £9.50, May 1981, 0 09 461950 6
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The Golden Veil 
by Paddy Kitchen.
Hamish Hamilton, 286 pp., £7.95, May 1981, 0 241 10584 6
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The Little Holland House Album 
by Edward Burne-Jones and John Christian.
Dalrymple Press, 39 pp., £38, April 1981, 0 9507301 0 6
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... powers of Rossetti, exerted quite carelessly and even unintentionally, made the young Burne-Jones his disciple. ‘I would have been chopped up for Gabriel,’ he said. Rossetti supervised him, tried to jolly him along, and introduced him everywhere. In the July of 1857, when Burne-Jones was 24: ‘Gabriel took me out ...

At the V&A

T.J. Clark: ‘The Cult of Beauty’, 19 May 2011

... means-ends rationality. ‘I hope sincerely it will be all the age does not want’ (this is Burne-Jones writing about the glorious Kelmscott Chaucer): ‘I have omitted nothing I could think of to obstruct the onward march of the world … I have done all I can to impede progress … having put my hand to the plough I invariably look back.’ Or: ‘Every ...

At Tate Britain

Tom Crewe: Burne-Jones, 24 January 2019

... There are​ self-trained artists; then there are self-willed ones. Edward Burne-Jones, like Vincent Van Gogh, was one of the latter. That’s to say, he decided, in 1855, to be an artist – he was studying for a theology degree at Oxford at the time – without knowing whether he was capable of being one, perhaps even without considering absence of talent a potential obstacle ...

Serried Yuppiedromes

Owen Hatherley: What happened to London?, 21 August 2014

Guide to the Architecture of London 
by Edward Jones and Christopher Woodward.
Phoenix, 511 pp., £16.99, July 2013, 978 1 78022 493 0
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... the last thirty years is to compare the introductions to the first and most recent editions of Edward Jones and Christopher Woodward’s Guide to the Architecture of London. In 1983, they wrote of a city in decline, its population down by about a sixth from its postwar height. ‘London is cleaner and uglier than it was at the beginning of the ...

Down the Telescope

Nicholas Penny: The Art of Imitation, 24 January 2019

Modern Painters, Old Masters: The Art of Imitation from the Pre-Raphaelites to the First World War 
by Elizabeth Prettejohn.
Yale, 286 pp., £45, June 2017, 978 0 300 22275 3
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... to Giorgione, she refers to its possible influence on George Frederic Watts in the 1860s and Edward Burne-Jones in the 1870s. It also influenced Pater’s own fiction, as readers of Marius the Epicurean (1885) will appreciate: the young knight Cornelius tries on his armour ‘and as he gleamed there amid that old ...

In praise of work

Dinah Birch, 24 October 1991

Ford Madox Brown and the Pre-Raphaelite Circle 
by Teresa Newman and Ray Watkinson.
Chatto, 226 pp., £50, July 1991, 0 7011 3186 1
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... he studied at Ghent and in the Antwerp Academy. Unlike William Morris, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, or Edward Burne-Jones, Brown profited from a broad and thorough education in the business of painting. Later, his art became a passion and a vocation. But it never ceased to be a job from which a living had somehow to be ...

Anything but Staffordshire

Rosemary Hill, 18 September 1997

Rare Spirit: A Life of William De Morgan 1839-1917 
by Mark Hamilton.
Constable, 236 pp., £22.50, September 1997, 0 09 474670 2
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... which in the early 1850s fired the imaginations of the Oxford undergraduates William Morris and Edward Burne Jones. But De Morgan was enrolled at University College, where there was no scope for picturesque medievalism. The spirit of place did not haunt Gower Street. Having failed to get a degree, De Morgan decided to ...

Wallpaper and Barricades

Terry Eagleton, 23 February 1995

William Morris: A Life for Our Time 
by Fiona MacCarthy.
Faber, 780 pp., £25, November 1994, 0 571 14250 8
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... went up to post-Newmanite Oxford to encounter Ruskin and (in the form of his lifelong colleague Edward Burne-Jones) Pre-Raphaelitism. After Oxford, he and his friends set up an arts and crafts workshop in Red Lion Square and helped to paint the Arthurian murals in the Oxford Union, while Morris himself unleashed an ...

At Pallant House

Eleanor Birne: Pauline Boty, 6 February 2014

... Simone Signoret. ‘There were other beautiful girls who could paint at the time,’ the architect Edward Jones recalled, ‘but none who were quite as wonderful as her.’ She had an acting career on the side, including a bit part in Alfie. She was almost cast as the lead in Darling, before Julie Christie came along. She danced on Ready Steady ...

Spurning at the High

Edward Pearce: A poet of Chartism, 6 November 2003

Ernest Jones, Chartism and the Romance of Politics 1819-69 
by Miles Taylor.
Oxford, 290 pp., £45, January 2003, 0 19 820729 8
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... checked in our days’ speaks the caution of 1867 as against the enthusiasm of 1832. But Ernest Jones could have done with Will Ladislaw’s luck. If Ladislaw’s connections with a ‘good family’ had been hopelessly vitiated by a parentage involving foreign and thus dubious, blood, Jones was well connected and wholly ...

Oh! – only Oh!

Ruth Bernard Yeazell: Burne-Jones, 9 February 2012

The Last Pre-Raphaelite: Edward Burne-Jones and the Victorian Imagination 
by Fiona MacCarthy.
Faber, 629 pp., £25, September 2011, 978 0 571 22861 4
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... Edward Jones – the Burne came later – was born in Birmingham to a mother who died giving birth to him and a father who eked out a living as a frame-maker, although art, his son reported, ‘was always a great bewilderment to him’. The only person who seems to have recognised the boy’s talent – a neighbour who bought pictures to rework – had the dubious merit of having once painted stormy waves over a calm harbour scene by Turner ...

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