The Legend of the Portent

Frederick Sandys


Wood engraving by W. Linton

5¾ x 3¾ inches

Illustration for The Cornhill Magazine, May 1860, facing p.617.

This is the artist’s first design on wood, illustrating a short story. It shows the moment when Elsie hears her lover’s anguished cry, pushed over a precipice by his brother. Sandys visualizes the lady’s ‘long hair’, ‘shaken and loose’ (p.624) and shows her clinging in terror to the cliff-face. Pre-Raphaelite in manner, the image is the first of several representations of anguished women, and is characteristically dynamic in its treatment of movement, space, and setting.

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Scanned image and text by Simon Cooke.

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