Academic journal article Arthuriana

Illuminating Arthurian Texts-In the Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries

Academic journal article Arthuriana

Illuminating Arthurian Texts-In the Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries

Article excerpt

In the Victorian age, there was a renewed interest in illumination, which is seen in the work of Ruskin and Morris, a growing scholarly attention to this subject, manuals instructing enthusiasts in the art of illumination, and a number of Arthurian works by artists as varied as Beardsley, Sangorski, and Beard. (AL)

An anonymous review of Tennyson's 1859 Idylls of the King in the London Review observed that the volume contained many passages 'which the pencil of Hunt or of Millais might nobly render to the eye' but that there was 'little need' for such illustration because 'the book itself is an illuminated poetic missal; it makes pictures to the imagination which the graphic art can only faintly realize.'1 What interests me here is not the reviewer's acumen in recognizing Tennyson's brilliant use of imagery but rather the comparison of that imagery to the decoration found in medieval manuscripts.

The Victorian interest in illumination was spurred on by John Ruskin, one of the leading figures in the contemporary art world. He wrote in a letter to Elizabeth Barrett Browning in 1855, '[a]mong various works I have in hand at present, one is the endeavour to revive the art of illumination.' Part of this endeavour, as Ruskin said in another letter (to Lady Trevelyan), involved teaching illumination to sign painters and 'the younger ladies' and having 'prayer books all written again.'2 Ruskin had an idealized view of the labor of the illuminator and of the reverence an illuminated book would receive. An account of a lecture Ruskin gave on illumination records that '[h]e could not imagine a happier life than that which would be led by any person of quiet and studious habits with something like the disposition of the old monks who were the illuminators in past times, while following this occupation.' The illuminator could also take great pride in the book because it would 'be placed in a library as a beloved thing, to be handed down from father to son, and from generation to generation,' rather than being 'printed in the ordinary way, tossed about and scattered all over the world with all the errors committed in it by printers' devils, and thrown aside as soon as read.'3 Thus, because of the greater beauty and artistic merit of the books produced and because of the satisfaction illumination gave to the worker, it was an occupation that Ruskin promoted.

Another important figure in the nineteenth-century art world, William Morris, became interested in illumination when he first became acquainted with the medieval illuminated manuscripts in the Bodleian Library. He began illuminating his own manuscripts in 1856 and after moving on to other interests returned to illumination in 1869.4 In his own library, Morris had 'approximately one hundred medieval manuscripts' as well as 'fifteenthcentury German and French illustrated books, which he drew upon repeatedly for examples of that unity of text and illustration which was central to his definition of the ideal book.'5 The illuminated manuscripts that Morris created himself ranged from short poems or tales to works like the Rubaiyat, Icelandic sagas, the Odes of Horace, and a part of Virgil's Aeneid, amounting to 'more than 1500 pages of careful writing in several styles of script and a great deal of ornament.'6 But they were usually quite different from the illuminated texts of the Middle Ages and from the nineteenth-century imitations of those texts.7 It is true that, as Joseph Dunlap has observed, '[e]ven today the richness of [Morris'] manuscript decoration and the extent of his creativity in this field or art are neither known nor appreciated...since each manuscript, whether complete or not, is unique, and reproductions of pages have been few and usually not in color.'8 Nevertheless, the productions of the Kelmscott Press are quite well known; and these were greatly influenced by Morris' work on illumination.

Concurrent with the interest of Ruskin and Morris in the illumination of the Middle Ages was a growing scholarly attention to this aspect of medieval culture. A number of books attempted to trace the history of illumination by providing plates with examples of illumination from different periods and commentary on those plates. Such books were made possible by the development in the nineteenth-century of the process of chromolithography, which allowed for the printing of high-quality color plates. One such scholarly book was The Illuminated Books of the Middle Ages by Henry Noel Humphreys, which bears the subtitle An Account of the Development and Progress of the Art of Illumination, as a Distinct Branch of Pictorial Ornamentation, from the IVth to the XVIIth Centuries (1849).9 Other books depicted alphabets in scripts based on manuscripts from different times or documented ornamentation in medieval manuscripts. The earliest of these, Ornaments Selected from Manuscripts of the Middle Ages (1833), contained text by Sir Frederic Madden (perhaps better known as an early editor of English Gawain romances) and drawings by Henry Shaw, one of the most skillful artists to reproduce manuscript pages.10 Shaw was in fact hired by John Ruskin to make copies of manuscripts in the British Museum.11

The scholarly work on illumination was complemented by books meant to instruct nineteenth-century enthusiasts in the creation of their own illuminated manuscripts and in the art of 'missal painting.' The term 'missalpainting' as it appears in the titles of the manuals written by Humphreys and others usually refers to what Morris called 'the painted ornamentation of medieval books,' but Morris thought the term a 'misnomer' suggesting that 'this art was the outcome of religion, or rather ecclesiasticism.' This theory, Morris believed, 'started in the Horace Walpole, or sham-Gothic period' and tended to underestimate the artistry of the medieval craftsman who had a 'personal and not mechanical' relationship to his art that allowed him 'to develop both his love for ornament and his love for story.'12 But most Victorians did not indulge in Morris' quibble and used the term 'missalpainting' to indicate all sorts of embellishments to a text, whether religious or secular.

Rowan Watson has noted that '[a] rather astonishing phenomenon of 1860-61 was the sudden appearance of cheap "How to illuminate manuals", sold by art publishers and by stationers who produced paints for artists.'13 These manuals also generally provided models for copying and often contained advertisements for the materials used in illuminating. 'Interest in illumination,' Watson commented, 'was commercially led. It was skillfully marketed by the companies that dominated the market for artists' materials.'14 Henry Noel Humphreys himself produced as a companion to his scholarly study The Art of Illumination and Missal Painting: A Guide to Modern Illuminators, which gave again a summary of the development of illumination and which referred readers to his more scholarly book to see examples of some of the manuscripts he wrote about. Yet he recognized the difference between the scholarly and the practical, instructive objectives of the two books and so advised his readers that 'in works intended for modern decoration, all the defective portions of a model should be avoided,' even as he recognized that if one is copying a manuscript 'for antiquarian purposes...strict accuracy is necessary.'15 After describing the styles depicted in his models, Humphreys offered suggestions to the modern illuminator for adapting and even improving on those styles. The modern illuminator might surpass the medieval because he or she has the advantage of Victorian science and discovery: 'Various branches of knowledge are at his command; a wider range of beautiful, natural objects, for which the world has been ransacked during the last century, surround him with models of exquisite novelty of form, of gorgeous and unprecedented combinations of colour, and intricate and surprising structure.'16

David Laurent de Lara and many of the manual writers who followed him were less concerned with describing the historical development of illumination and offering plates so complex that the beginner would be 'embarrassed by the intricacy of the design' and would not know where to start. Rather, as he said in his 1850 book on Elementary Instruction in the Art of Illuminating and Missal Painting on Vellum, his aim was 'to smooth down the difficult path of the beginner, to unravel for him the mysteries in the art, to give him examples of practical designs to imitate from, suitable to his skill.'17 Similarly, W. Randle Harrison in Suggestions for Illuminating declared that his purpose was not 'to enter fully into the history of the art...but rather to offer suggestions for its practice.'18 Most of the subsequent manuals gave an abbreviated history of the development of illumination followed by advice for practicing the art-including suggestions on the use of colors, obtaining and preparing vellum, boards, and paper, and the instruments, brushes, pens, and pencils needed-and for designing and executing the illuminated page.

In the preface to the Guide to the Art of Illuminating and Missal Painting, which was first published in 1861, William and George Audsley wrote that '[o]wing to the rapidly increasing love for the beautiful Art of Illumination, and the devotion with which it is being studied throughout the length and breadth of our land, no apology is required for the appearance of this little volume.'19 The success of the book, which ultimately went through twenty editions, is proof of the popularity of illumination. In fact, as late as 1911, George Audsley published another manual on the topic, his Guide to the Art of Illuminating on Vellum and Paper.20 Another indicator of the popularity of illumination and perhaps one of the reasons for that popularity is the fact that in 1855 the children of Victoria and Albert began receiving lessons in illumination.21 Illumination also became part of public life and ritual, in 'the form of the Illuminated Address. These were offered to dignitaries to mark some event, for example retirement, a visit to a borough, the comingof-age or marriage of the estate owner, the giftto a public institution by a benefactor....Queen Victoria [ruled 1837-1901] was sent several thousand such addresses for the [Golden and Diamond] Jubilees of 1887 and 1897,' celebrating fifty and then sixty years of her rule.22 And, of course, she was given such addresses on other occasions as well. In the Bristol Museum and Art Gallery, a Bristol Historical Tapestry records that '[o]n November 15, 1899, Queen Victoria drove through the lavishly decorated streets to the Council House where she knighted Herbert Ashman, the First Lord Mayor of Bristol, and received an illuminated address before driving to the Downs where she opened the Convalescent Home.'

Illumination became popular in America as well as in England. An 1899 article in the American art magazine Brush and Pencil gave an outline history of illumination and observed that '[s]everal books are now to be had for no very extravagant sum, the designs in which may have their elegance greatly enhanced by coloring them,' and mentioned British and American women who have excelled in this field. It also suggested that the collection of manuscripts in the Newberry Library in Chicago could serve as a source of models for artists (just as some of the British manuals referred illuminators to the British Museum for their models).23 Even the American children's magazine St. Nicholas printed an article in April 1877 on 'Illuminated Texts' that gave practical advice on illumination but also took the opportunity to teach a lesson to young readers: 'above all, you want that care and patience so indispensable for producing anything really fine, delicate, or worth having. There is no royal road to anything, remember. All our little successes must be earned step by step, slowly and faithfully, with nothing shirked, nothing hurried, and we must be willing to give the time which is needed to make each step perfect in its way before we pass to another.'24

Scholarship, technology, antiquarianism, commercialism, and theories of the relationship between art and society all combined to make illumination a pursuit of interest to serious artists and to a contingent of amateurs. Arthurian works admittedly constitute only a small part of the manuscripts and books produced as a result of the revival of interest in illumination, but among their numbers are some beautiful and important productions.

In his 1860 Primer of the Art of Illumination for the Use of Beginners, Freeman Delamotte commented on the difficulty of defining 'illumination' and concluded that 'for most purposes it may perhaps suffice to define it as a peculiar system of ornamenting manuscript or letterpress, which leaves the body of the matter intact, or only fills up the hiatus at the ends of paragraphs, bestows on the initial letter or letters an ornamentation more or less elaborate and profuse, extends that ornamentation along the top and down the leftside of the matter, or still further extending, envelopes the whole in a sort of framework of colour, gilding, &c.'25 The anonymous reviewer of The Book of Ornamental Alphabets, another of Delamotte's books, remarked that '[i]n this age of ornamental productions, whether issued from the press, or the result of hand-labour,' Delamotte offered excellent examples for imitation.26 Because the medieval matter of Tennyson's Arthurian poems seemed a particularly appropriate subject for illumination and because Tennyson was an extremely popular poet, his Arthurian poems (and, admittedly, other non-Arthurian poems by him) were a favorite of illuminators, and they appeared in both of the forms mentioned by Delamotte and his reviewer-that is, in manuscript and in print. Hand-colored manuscripts of passages from the Idylls of the King and other favorites like 'The Lady of Shalott' were produced personally and commercially. Some were quite ornate creations that contained both illuminated or historiated initials, marginal decorations, elaborate borders, and miniatures. One such manuscript reproduces and decorates the text of passages from a number of Tennyson's idylls. 'The Song of Love and Death' that Elaine sings in the 'Lancelot and Elaine' idyll, for example, has a bottom border that depicts the Victorian staple of Elaine in her barge. Here the sadness of the scene is emphasized by showing her grieving brothers on the shore just as she is about to make her final journey to Camelot (see Figure 1). Models for narrative scenes such as this can be found in the nineteenth-century books on illumination. In Madden and Shaw's volume on ornamentation, for example, one of the plates reproduces from 'a beautiful Psalter in the library of Francis Douce' a scene in the lower margin of a page, 'the well known legend of the mode practiced in capturing and killing an unicorn.'27 I am not suggesting that the illuminator of the nineteenth-century manuscript necessarily knew this book-though she or he might have-but that the types of scenes and decorations that were used by the modern illuminators might have found models not only in medieval manuscripts but also in contemporary manuals. Other popular images such as Merlin falling under Vivien's spell (see Figure 2) and Enid singing also appear in the manuscript on splendidly decorated and colored pages.

Like Henry Shaw, who drew and engraved the plates in Madden's study, other artists gained reputations as skilled illuminators. Alberto Sangorski (1862-1932), 'a former jeweler and numismatist-turned-illuminator, produced many richly illuminated manuscripts by hand,' including Tennyson's 'Lady of Shalott' and his 'Morte d'Arthur.' According to the authors of Manuscript Illumination in the Modern Age, '[e]ach of these florid and colorful one-offworks echoed the aesthetic less of original illumination than of nineteenthcentury reconfigurations of medieval ornament.'28 Sangorski's illuminated 'Morte d'Arthur,'29 which was published by Chatto & Windus in 1912, included virtually all of the elements of illumination-from illuminated and rubricated letters to animal and floral motifs, heraldic devices, miniature paintings, and border illustrations (see Figure 3)-that were, for the Victorians, characteristic of medieval manuscripts. All of these elements can be found in some medieval manuscripts but also were commented on in the nineteenthcentury manuals. H. Noel Humphreys, for example, wrote that miniatures 'began to form an almost essential part in all richly illuminated pages' (50). Thus we have the painting of the Lady of the Lake entrusting Excalibur to Arthur. Or in a page from Sangorski's illuminations of 'The Lady of Shalott,' we find a miniature of Lancelot riding down to Camelot as well as one of 'many-tower'd Camelot' itself and even a reproduction of the Waterhouse painting of the Lady of Shalott.30 Humphreys also commented on 'the richly elaborate borderings that gradually developed themselves in the works of the illuminators of Flanders, France, Italy, and England and on the 'Gothic bracket,' a sort of three-quarter page border which 'became gradually more and more intricate, until at length enclosing the whole page.'31 The full border can be seen not only in the page from Sangorski's 'Morte d'Arthur' pictured in Figure 3 but in many other illuminated texts. Partial borders are also found in numerous illuminations, as in some of the pages of 'The Lady of Shalott,' which Sangorski decorated elaborately and beautifully, often with stylized natural imagery typical of these manuscripts.

Rowan Watson cites a comment by Madden on the 'naturalism' of fifteenthcentury manuscript illumination in Flanders and observes that '[t]he insistence that fifteenth-century illumination was characterised by the study of nature seems best explained by the necessity of relating this newly discovered art form to the onward march of progress in the arts.' He goes on to say that '[t]he appeal to naturalism allowed late medieval illumination to be admired as a historical precedent for a quality valued in nineteenth-century art, but it remains a very minor element in most surviving illuminated works.'32 Other manuals, such as Suggestions for Illuminating by W. Randle Harrison, advise that modern illuminators 'take nature for our model' and 'apply to the adornment of our pages the richly-plumed birds, the gorgeously-coloured insects, and richly enamelled minerals of our own and other countries. Indeed, what is there in nature which could not be adapted for the purpose?'33 Whether there is an attempt to imitate nature or to imitate the stylized imagery more typical of medieval illumination, natural imagery abounds in the decoration and borders of nineteenth-century illuminated manuscripts.

Since Tennyson's Arthurian poems were widely known and admired in America, American artists also illuminated them. Another edition of 'The Lady of Shalott' that attempted to capture the feel of an illuminated manuscript was illustrated by Howard Pyle34-though the volume was selfconscious about its use of 'illumination' and thus printed the text without illumination or decoration facing each 'illuminated' page (see Figure 4). Despite its beauty and charm, Pyle himself was not happy with this book. Perhaps his dissatisfaction was a result of his never fully grasping or committing to the concept of a modern illuminated text. He seems caught between illumination and illustration. Another American book, an edition of the Idylls of the King, says specifically that it was '[d]ecorated and Illuminated' (emphasis added) by the brothers Rhead, George WooliscroftRhead and Louis Rhead (see Figure 5).35 The Rhead brothers produced wonderful illustrations that captured important moments in Tennyson's poems, such as Geraint fighting three knights, Elaine in her barge, Vivien's casting the spell that entraps Merlin, and Arthur's visiting Guinevere in the nunnery. But they also designed illuminated title pages ornamented in the Celtic style and with page borders with intricate decoration and lavish initial letters such as those mentioned and illustrated in manuals on illumination and found in manuscripts.

In 1893 and 1894, J.M. Dent published an edition of Malory's Morte Darthur, illustrated by Aubrey Beardsley.36 To be sure, the influences on Beardsley's art were various-ranging from the Japanese to the Pre-Raphaelite. But he was undoubtedly aware of the contemporary interest in illumination; and though he was illustrating the volume in black and white, he nevertheless incorporated into it a number of the elements discussed in the manuals on illumination, albeit in his own unique style, and often more as a parody of than as a tribute to the medieval. Beardsley's androgynous, effeminate knights are well known and often recognized as a deromanticization and subversion of traditional medieval romantic imagery.37 Beardsley also imitated and parodied elements of medieval illuminated manuscripts. Debra Mancoffhas observed that Beardsley derived much of his ornamentation, such as 'illuminated initials, patterned and foliate borders...and marginalia' from medieval manuscript illumination but that his visual language 'adamantly does not' reflect the medieval prototype.38 Examples of floral borders can be found in the manuals on illumination, in David Laurent de Lara's Elementary Instruction in the Art of Illuminating and Missal Painting on Vellum, for example,39 as well as in plates produced in various books on the history of illumination. Of course, Beardsley added his own sometimes bizarre details to those borders. In one of his borders, for example, instead of the lush natural imagery of some manuscripts, there are vines adorned with bladelike thorns and inhabited by satyresses (see Figure 6). Even the famous roundel enclosing Merlin could have found a model in the manuals on illumination.40 Many of the images that appear in Beardsley's chapter headings and occasionally in his borders are clearly re-imaginings of the grotesques that populate medieval illuminated manuscripts and that, like those grotesques, do not necessarily have any thematic link to the text itself. Beardsley's chapter headings, which include images of knights, angels and demons, hermaphrodites, male and female satyrs, harpies, peacocks, knights with satyrs, angels with satyrs, and angels with peacocks, thus mix imagery of the sacred, the secular, and the profane. Like his larger illustrations, these imitations of the medieval grotesques suggest that the romance world in which love is ideal and prowess is used for virtuous ends is a fiction. In doing so, they also comment on the medievalism of the Victorian age and thus on the age itself.

In 1897, Dent published as a sort of companion to the Beardsley Malory an edition of Spenser's Faerie Queene, which was 'pictured and decorated' by Louis Fairfax-Muckley,41 whose illustrations and decorations recall Beardsley's. Some of the decorative vegetation Fairfax-Muckley used, for example, is reminiscent of that found in the Dent Morte but without the sometimes erotic suggestions of Beardsley's work. His illustrations are also more consistent with the depiction of the characters in the text, as can be seen in his image of the Redcrosse Knight's fighting a dragon. In addition to the border, nicely populated by dragons, the image is partially enclosed by a form of the Gothic bracket that the manuals describe. Fairfax-Muckley also used the more common border with intertwined vegetation-though as Beardsley does, he sometimes included mythic creatures, like a dragon, within that vegetation. And his initial letters sometimes contain figures relevant to the story (see Figure 7).

A similar decoration of initials and borders to reflect events of the text was found in The Romance of Tristram of Lyones & La Beale Isoude (1920), which was illuminated by Evelyn Paul.42 In one initial, for example, Paul shows Tristram harping for Isoude. Paul's borders depict such events as Tristram jousting with Mark and Mark and Isoude being observed by Tristram. Paul is obviously influenced by what H. Noel Humphreys, in his Art of Illumination and Missal Painting, refers to as the 'Anglo-Hibernian' style. In the same book, Humphreys refers readers to examples of this style to use as models, including a page from the Durham Book (or Lindisfarne Gospels) that he reproduced in his Illuminated Books of the Middle Ages. Whether Paul took as her model the Durham Book or the Book of Kells, she is clearly imitating the distinctive style of these manuscripts, as her title pages for The Romance of Tristram (see Figure 8) and for Claire de lune and Other Troubadour Romances43 demonstrate.

While the works of artists like Paul and Sangorski derive from the appreciation of the artistry of medieval illumination by those who rediscovered it in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, another artist, Dan Beard, the illustrator of Mark Twain's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court,44 used elements found in medieval manuscripts and discussed in the manuals on illumination to parody the modern popularity of illumination. One of the reasons that Twain was so taken with Beard's illustrations for Connecticut Yankee is that the artist, like the writer, not only presented an image of the medieval world but also used that image to satirize his own age. Beard includes images of nineteenth-century figures-Merlin, for example, is given Tennyson's face, and the slave driver is depicted as robber baron Jay Gould. Beard's satire extended to the contemporary art world. His image of Arthur receiving Excalibur from the Lady of the Lake, in which Arthur leans out over the prow and seems to be on the verge of falling into the water, is clearly mocking a similar image found in the first edition in 1880 of the popular Boy's King Arthur, which was illustrated by Alfred Kappes.45

Beard also parodied the fashion for illustrating texts in the manner of medieval manuscript illumination by employing historiated initials and border illustrations at the bottom, side, or top of the page, sometimes even extending to transect the page. Another element that Beard adapted in his illustrations was the elaboration of ornamentation to letters. Often in manuscripts and in the examples in some of the manuals, tracery continues well beyond an initial letter, sometimes as decoration and sometimes forming a part of the border of the page. In his 1860 Primer of Illumination, Freeman Delamotte writes that one of the principles of illumination is that ornamentation oozes 'over as it were beyond the limits of the letter itself,' and 'extends in a straggling manner upwards and downwards, or downwards and along, forming a partial fringe to the corner or margin of the page.'46 Although sometimes Beard's initial letters and borders are merely decorative, in other instances they are part of the illustration or satire of the book. In one image at the beginning of Chapter 39, the lasso that Hank uses to unhorse opponents in a joust and that Merlin steals hangs from the large initial H and replaces the typical tracery as it descends from the letter to form the leftborder and part of the bottom border. The letter M that begins Chapter 17 (see Figure 9), the chapter in which Hank visits Morgan le Fay, is decorated with an attractive vine-and-leaf pattern. But from the end of the vine, the tracery continues with a group of hangman's ropes from which dangle the members of the band whom Morgan had executed because they played so poorly. Another noose descends from the initial I of Chapter 35, in which a young woman is condemned to die because she stole a small piece of linen to get money to feed herself and her babies. The border design separates from the initial letter to leave a stark image of the hangman's rope descending from the initial to the young woman's neck as she entrusts her babies to a priest. Even the slaughter of the assembled chivalry of Britain, an act that one critic has referred to as Hank's 'final solution,'47 is reflected in a border design (see Figure 10)-the typically lush and beautiful vegetation being replaced by a lifeless tree containing pieces of armor from the knights blown up by Hank's explosives. The devastation is also suggested by the initial I of Chapter 43, which parodies the Bayeux Tapestry by depicting knights slain not merely by swords, spears, axes, and arrows, as in the tapestry, but thrown into the air by an explosion.

Beard's parodies, like Beardsley's perversions, suggest that the medieval art of illumination was widely known and practiced. Their drawings, like the numerous manuals, popular imitations, and highly artistic illuminated books of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, point to an extensive interest in medieval illumination. Initially inspired by scholarly study, this interest-like other aspects of nineteenth-century medievalism-became a popular-cultural phenomenon.



1 Review of Idylls of the King. By Alfred Tennyson, D.C.L., Poet Laureate. E. Moxon and Co. 1859. London Review 13 (1859-1860): p. 79 [pp. 62-80].

2 John Ruskin, The Works of John Ruskin, 39 vols., ed. E.T. Cook and Alexander Wedderburn (London: George Allen, 1912), vol. 36: p. 197, 175.

3 Ruskin, vol. 12: p. 485.

4 Paul Thompson, The Work of William Morris (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991), p. 150.

5 William S. Peterson, 'Introduction' to William Morris, The Ideal Book: Essays and Lectures on the Arts of the Book, ed. William S. Peterson (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1982), p. xxiv.

6 Joseph R. Dunlap gives a good survey of Morris' illumination in 'Morris and the Book Arts before the Kelmscott Press,' Victorian Poetry 13.3-4 (Fall-Winter 1975): pp. 141-57; and the edition of Morris's translation of The Story of Kormak, the Son of Ogmund, trans. William Morris and Eiríkr Magnússon, with an Introduction by Grace J. Calder and a Note on the manuscript work of William Morris by Alfred Fairbank (London: William Morris Society, 1970) contains 'An Annotated List of the Manuscript Work of William Morris.'

7 Sandra Hindman, Michael Camille, Nina Rowe, and Rowan Watson, Manuscript Illumination in the Modern Age: Recovery and Reconstruction (Evanston, IL: Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art, Northwestern University, 2001), p. 171.

8 Dunlap, p. 155.

9 H[enry] Noel Humphreys, The Illuminated Books of the Middle Ages: An Account of the Development and Progress of the Art of Illumination, as a Distinct Branch of Pictorial Ornamentation, from the IVth to the XVIIth Centuries (London: Longman, Brown, Green, and Longmans, 1849).

10 Sir Frederic Madden, Illuminated Ornaments Selected from Manuscripts of the Middle Ages, Drawn and Engraved by Henry Shaw (London: William Pickering, 1833).

11 Hindman et al., p. 112.

12 Morris, The Ideal Book, p. 2.

13 Rowan Watson, Illuminated Manuscripts and Their Makers: An Account Based on the Collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum (London: V and A Publications, 2003), p. 131.

14 Rowan Watson, 'Publishing for the Leisure Industry: Illuminating Manuals and the Reception of a Medieval Art in Victorian Britain,' in The Revival of Medieval Illumination: Nineteenth-Century Belgium Manuscripts and Illuminations from a European Perspective, ed. Thomas Coomans and Jan De Maeyer (Leuven: Leuven University Press/KADOC, 2007), p. 93 [79-107].

15 H[enry] Noel Humphreys, The Art of Illumination and Missal Painting: A Guide to Modern Illuminators, Illustrated by a Series of Examples, of the Size of the Originals, Selected from the Most Beautiful Mss. of the Various Periods, Executed on Stone and Printed in Colours by Owen Jones (London: H.G. Bohn, 1849), p. 13.

16 Humphreys, The Art of Illumination, p. 63.

17 D[avid] Laurent de Lara, Elementary Instruction in the Art of Illuminating and Missal Painting on Vellum, A Guide to Modern Illuminators (1850; 2d enlarged edn. London: Ackermann and Co., [1856]), p. 14.

18 W. Randle Harrison, Suggestions for Illuminating, Chromolithographed by Vincent Brooks (1861; 2nd edn. London: J. Barnard & Son, n. d.), p. 7.

19 William Audsley and George Ashdown Audsley, Guide to the Art of Illuminating and Missal Painting (London: George Rowney and Co., 1861), Preface [unnumbered].

20 George Ashdown Audsley, Guide to the Art of Illuminating on Vellum and Paper. 6th edn. London: George Rowney & Co., 1911.

21 Watson, 'Publishing for the Leisure Industry,' p. 88.

22 Watson, Illuminated Manuscripts, p. 132.

23 Gardner C. Teall, 'The Art of Illumination,' Brush and Pencil 5.2 (Nov. 1899): 75-76 [71-76].

24 Susan Coolidge, 'Illuminated Texts,' St. Nicholas (April 1877): 379 [379-80].

25 F[reeman] Delamotte, A Primer of the Art of Illumination for the Use of Beginners; with a Rudimentary Treatise on the Art, Practical Directions for Its Exercise, and Examples Taken from Illuminated Mss. (London: E.& F.N. Spon, 1860), p. 8.

26 Review of F. Delamotte's The Book of Ornamental Alphabets; Ancient and Modern, The Art-Journal n.s. 4 (1858): p. 224.

27 Madden, description of Plate IX.

28 Hindman et al., p. 169.

29 Alfred Lord Tennyson, Morte D'Arthur, ill. Alberto Sangorski (London: Chatto and Windus, 1912). Links to all of the images from this book may be found on the Artist Menu of The Camelot Project at the University of Rochester (http://www.lib.rochester. edu/camelot/artmenu.htm).

30 The University of Pittsburgh Library owns the unique copy of Sangorski's Lady of Shalott and has generously made it available online (;cc=ulstext;view=toc;idno=31735060979378).

31 Art of Illumination, pp. 38, 49.

32 Watson, 'Publishing for the Leisure Industry,' p. 86.

33 W. Randle Harrison, Suggestions for Illuminating, Chromolithographed by Vincent Brooks, (2d edn.: London: J. Barnard & Son, n.d. [1st edn., 1861]), p. 8.

34 Alfred Tennyson, The Lady of Shalott, ill. Howard Pyle (New York: Dodd, Mead and Co., 1881).

35 Alfred Tennyson, Idylls of the King, ill. George WooliscroftRhead and Louis Rhead (New York: R.H. Russell, 1898).

36 Thomas Malory, The Birth Life and Acts of King Arthur, of His Noble Knights of the Round Table, Their Marvelous Enquests and Adventures, The Achieving of the San Greal, and in the End the Morte DArthur with the Dolorous Death and Departing out of This World of Them All. The Text as Written by Sir Thomas Malory and Imprinted by Thomas Caxton at Westminster the Year MCCCCLXXXV and Now Spelled in Modern Style, 2 vols., ill. Aubrey Beardsley, with an introduction by Prof. John Rhys and a note on Aubrey Beardsley by Aymer Vallance. London: J.M. Dent, 1893-1894. Links to images from this volume may be found on the Artist Menu of The Camelot Project (

37 Barbara Tepa Lupack, with Alan Lupack, Illustrating Camelot (Cambridge: D.S. Brewer, 2008), p. 87.

38 Debra N. Mancoff, The Arthurian Revival in Victorian Art (New York: Garland Publishing, 1990), p. 262.

39 See Laurent De Lara, Plate III.

40 See Laurent De Lara, Plate IV.

41 Edmund Spenser, Faerie Queene, Pictured and Decorated by Louis Fairfax-Muckley, Intro. by John W. Hales (London: J.M. Dent, 1897).

42 The Romance of Tristram of Lyones & La Beale Isoude, drawn from the Celtic French and illuminated by Evelyn Paul (London: Harrap, n.d.).

43 Michael West, Claire de lune and Other Troubadour Romances, Pictured by Evelyn Paul, Music by Alfred Mereer (London: George G. Harrap, n.d.).

44 Mark Twain, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, ill. Dan Beard (New York: Charles L. Webster, 1889).

45 The Boy's King Arthur: Sir Thomas Malory's History of King Arthur and His Knights of the Round Table, edited with an introduction by Sidney Lanier, ill. Alfred Kappes (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1880). Links to the Kappes illustration and all of the Beard illustrations referred to in this article may be found on the Artist Menu of The Camelot Project (

46 Delamotte, pp. 11-12.

47 Robert Keith Miller, Mark Twain (New York: Frederick Ungar, 1983), p. 131.

[Author Affiliation]

Alan Lupack is Director of the Rossell Hope Robbins Library at the University of Rochester, Associate Editor of the TEAMS Middle English Texts series, and the creator of The Camelot Project. He has edited medieval and modern Arthurian texts; written numerous articles on Arthurian literature, art, and film; and written a volume of Arthurian poetry. He is the former editor of The Round Table: A Journal of Poetry and Fiction and of the journal Avalon to Camelot; and he is the author of The Oxford Guide to Arthurian Literature and Legend and co-author of King Arthur in America and Illustrating Camelot.

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