The British Museum holds a superb collection of Pre-Raphaelite masterpieces of drawing, print and book illustration. This beautiful book draws upon this wealth of graphic art to introduce the fascinating world of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, whose most famous members and followers included Dante Gabriel Rossetti, John Everett Millais, William Holman Hunt, Ford Madox Brown, Edward Burne-Jones and William Morris.
The brotherhood was founded as a radical movement in 1848 by seven rebellious young artists whose chief principle was truth to nature. Rejecting mainstream Victorian art, they used a mixture of hyper-realism and fantasy to create a brash and controversial new style that they felt harked back to medieval tradition. The author describes the intriguing relationships between individual artists and also between their graphic works, with links to some of their best-known paintings. Victorian novels, poetry and even religious and children's books all provided ideal subjects for Pre-Raphaelite illustration, and these dramatic images are here accompanied by a wide selection of contemporary literature.