Greatest American Painters

Francis Davis Millet (1846 – 1912)

Posted by American Gallery on September 30, 2012

Reading The Story Of Oenone

After The Festival

An Autumn Idyll

A Handmaiden

Woman Lacing A Sandal

Wandering Thoughts

Kate Field

Woman In A Brown Dress

Between Two Fires

At The Inn

A Difficult Duet

The Window Seat (Artist’s Wife)

Portrait Of Mrs.Millet

Playing With Baby

Old Harmonies

The Widow

The Expansionist

The Granddaughter

A Spring Offering

A Cosey Corner

Mark Twain

The Turkish Guard

Turkish Waterseller

Portrait Of A Young Circassian Woman

A Broadway Milkmaid

Lilly Millet In A Hammock

Flemish Kitchen

How The Gossip Grew

The Cossacks – Fifty Lashes


6 Responses to “Francis Davis Millet (1846 – 1912)”

  1. Bruce said

    Some interesting historical notes here.

    Millet served in the Civil War as a drummer boy, then surgical assistant (to his surgeon father). According to Wikipedia, “He repeatedly pointed to his experience working for his father as giving him an appreciation for the vivid blood red that he repeatedly used in his early paintings.”

    The excellent portrait of “Mark Twain” was a by-product of Twain’s friendship with Millet. In fact, Twain was the best man at Millet’s wedding.

    The authentic look of “The Turkish Guard” no doubt comes from Millet’s tour of duty as war correspondent in the Russo-Turkish war of 1877-1878. But who/what the heck is that floating head doing there? I’m afraid to ask.

    Millet died in 1912 all right, because he went down with the Titanic! “He was last seen helping women and children into lifeboats.”

    Kate Field is a story onto herself. This, again, is according to Wikipedia:

    “She was born in St. Louis, Mo., the daughter of Joseph M. Field, was educated in New England and in England, and prolonged her stay in Europe as correspondent of various American newspapers, writing also for magazines. On her return she gave lectures and public readings and in 1874 appeared as Peg Woffington at Booth’s Theatre, New York. She afterward abandoned the regular comedy for dance, song, and recitation, but achieved no striking success. In 1882-83 she headed a Cooperative Dress Association in New York, which achieved a conspicuous failure. In 1889 she established Kate Field’s Washington, a weekly journal published in the capital. After 1868 she published numerous volumes of miscellaneous contents, no longer noteworthy.

    “Kate Field never married. In October 1860, while visiting his mother’s home in Florence, Italy, the celebrated British novelist Anthony Trollope met Kate. She became one of his closest friends and was the subject of Trollope’s high esteem, as noted in his ‘Autobiography’: ‘There is an American woman, of whom not to speak in a work purporting to [be] a memoir of my own life would be to omit all allusion to one of the chief pleasures which has graced my later years.’ Trollope scholars have speculated on the nature of their warm friendship. Twenty-four of his letters to Kate survive, at the Boston Public Library; hers to Trollope do not.

    “Kate Field died of pneumonia in 1896.”

    She “achieved no striking success,” was capable of “conspicuous failure,” and her work is “no longer noteworthy” yet her personality fairly leaps out from her portrait above. It’s mostly my imagination, I’m sure, but sometimes I do imagine that an artist will put more effort into a portrait based on the character of the subject (or his or her feelings for her or him). It could be different periods/stages of Millet’s painting career, but compare the forcefulness and feeling of “Kate Field” to the blandness of “Wandering Thoughts.” I am not positing a romance here, but I am suggesting that Ms. Field might have been somebody who would motivate an artist to do his best.

  2. Albi said

    sta vecchia che prega è mia nonna… sicuro…

  3. Pinklunamoon said

    The Expansionist non mi è chiaro… c’è un sacco di disordine in quella stanza o sbaglio? Ma come non le vien voglia di mettere a posto… lol

    • Suzay Lamb said

      Beh, direi che lui è un viaggiatore e un cartografo. Quello che ha intorno, probabilmente, è per lui un “caos ordinato”. La moglie lo osserva con ammirazione e, da donna intelligente e rispettosa, si guarda bene dal modificare l’ambiente che il marito si è creato nello studio.

  4. Thank you for sharing these paintings. There are some lovely gems here!

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