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Victorian Art My First Sermon by Sir John Everett Millais Bt Girl with Red Cape


USD 150.00  

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Victorian Art
My First Sermon by Sir John Everett Millais Bt
Little  Girl Effie with Red Cape 

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Victorian Art My First Sermon by Sir John Everett Millais Bt  Girl with Red Cape 

Really Gorgeous Artwork 

Vintage / Antique  

Print of a Little Girl named Effie sitting on a padded bench seat 

She is wearing a velvet hat with a feather 
that straps under her chin 

Also wearing a red cape coat with black trim 
A fur hand warmer keeps her warm while she waits 
She has red leggings and antique leather boots 

Beside her on the bench is a bible 

Print size is 6.75 x 4.75 inch 

Total including frame 9.5 x 7 inch 

Very ornate wooden frame ( minor wear )

Oval glass to protect the print

Wire in back all ready for hanging 

** Please note we have another print with this cute girl asleep which is called My Second Sermon for sale in our Shoppe
Please feel free to browse our Art Section

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About the painting courtesy of  Victorian Web 


My First Sermon

Sir John Everett Millais Bt PRA (1829-96)


Original is an Oil on canvas

92 x 77cm

Guildhall Art Gallery (701)

Bequeathed by Charles Gassiot, 1902

This painting, together with the one Millais painted of the same child's second sermon, was one of his most admired. 

Related Material

My Second Sermon

Illustration of All Saints Church at Kingston-on-Thames, Surrey (where the picture was painted)

Ideas of Childhood in Victorian Children's Fiction: The Child as Innocent

Reproduced courtesy of the Corporation of London

My First Sermon was exhibited in 1863 at the Royal Academy, and at the Academy banquet on 3 May the Archbishop of Canterbury is reported to have said, "Art has, and ever will have, a high and noble mission to fulfil.... we feel ourselves the better and the happier when our hearts are enlarged as we sympathise with the joys and the sorrows of our fellow-men, faithfully delineated on the canvas; when our spirits are touched by the playfulness, the innocence, the purity, and may I not add (pointing to Millais' picture of My First Sermon) the piety of childhood (qtd. in Millais 378). Millais' son and first biographer continues:

This little picture of Effie was extremely popular. The artist himself was so pleased with it that, before going North in August of that year, he made an oil copy of it, doing the work from start to finish in two days! A truly marvellous achievement, considering that the copy displayed almost the same high finish as the original; but in those two days he worked incessantly from morning to night, never even breaking off for lunch in the middle of the day. Well might he say, as he did in a letter to my mother, "I never did anything in my life so well or so quickly." The copy was sold as soon as it was finished, and I see from an entry in my mother's book that he received £180 for it.

John Guille Millais adds in a footnote that the pictures were painted in the old church at Kingston-on-Thames, were Millais' parents lived, before the "old highbacked pews" had been removed." He continues by explaining that his father "was now, so far as I can judge, at the summit of his powers in point of both physical strength and technical skill, the force and rapidity of his execution being simply amazing" (378).

Millais was evidently fond of children, particularly, of course, his own. Effie was often used as his model. He had already painted children — for example in The Woodsman's Daughter (1850-51), but this painting marks the first of several well-known ones in which one child is the centre of attention (see Fleming 224). It makes its mark by showing the child in her red cape, with black trim, and soft furry muff, a bright splash of colour in the dim church, her short legs in their red stockings supported for her, concentrating as hard and seriously as she can on the sermon. The poignancy comes from guessing it is all really over her head. Perhaps there is a touch of humour, too, which will be more apparent in its later companion piece, My Second Sermon, when she has given up trying to concentrate and has fallen asleep! Other examples of paintings of Millais's affectionate dwelling on a single child subject are Bubbles (1865-6) and, much later, Little Speedwell's Darling Blue (1891-92). — Jacqueline Banerjee

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As we define the condition that is relative to
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