Sonntag, 28. Februar 2016

Charles Edmund (C.E.) Brock: Illustrations for EMMA by Jane Austen

Charles Edmund (C.E.) Brock was born on 5 February 1870 in London, before the family moved to Cambridge, where Henry Matthew (H.M.) was born on 11 July 1875. They were trained at the studio of Henry Wiles and their career began in the early 1890s under the helm of Macmillan. The marriage produced another two sons: Richard Henry, who was a landscape painter, and Thomas Alfred, a mathematician.

Charles Edmund Brock

As they "were attracted to the architecture, furniture, and costume of the later eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries" (Rogerson, Ian), they "set about gathering period artefacts for their studio", which they shared also with their brother Richard. This is one of the keys to their success as illustrators, since, with the help of family and friends who posed as models attired in those garments and placed in such settings, the Brocks were able to recreate very realistic scenes from the books they would illustrate.

 I planned the match from that hour

...and of their having eight cows, two of them Alderneys, and one little Welsh cow, a very pretty little Welsh cow, indeed; and of Mrs Martin's saying, as she was so fond of it, it should be called her cow;...

Mr Elton was only too happy. Harriet listened, and Emma drew in peace. She must allow him to be still frequently coming to look;...

Mr Perry could not quite understand him, but he was very sure there must be a lady in the case, and he told him so; and Mr Elton only looked very conscious and smiling, and rode off in great spirits.

"My dear poor Isabella," said he, fondly taking her hand, and interrupting, for a few moments, her busy labours for some one of her five children, "How long it is, how terribly long since you were here! And how tired you must be after your journey! You must go to bed early, my dear - and I recommend a little gruel to you before you go - You and I will have a nice basin of gruel together.
...and as for herself, she was too much provoked and offended to have the power of directly saying any thing to the purpose. She could only give him a look; but it was such a look as she thought must restore him ti his senses; and then left the sofa,...

My mother does not hear; she is a little deaf you know. "Ma'am," addressing her, "do you hear what Miss Woodhouse is so obliging to say about Jane's handwriting?"

...and I had not got three yards from the door, when he came after me, only to say, if I was going to Hartfield, he thought I had much better go round by Mr Cole's stables, for I should find the near way quite floated by by this rain.

Its character as a ballroom caught him; and instead of passing on, he stopped for several minutes at the two superior windows which were open to look in and lament that its oroginal purpose should have ceased.

He told her that he had been impatient to leave the dining room - hated sitting long - was always the first to move when he could - that his father, Mr Knightley, Mr Cox, and Mr Cole, were left very busy over parish business -

There, it is done. I have the pleasure, madam (to Mrs Bates), of restoring your spectacles, healed for the present.
"To think of you sending us all your store apples. You said you had a great many, and now you have not one left. We really are so shocked! Mrs Hodges may well be angry. William Larkins mentioned it here. You should not have done it, indeed you should not. Ah! -  he is off. He never can bear to be thanked.
One perplexity, however, arose, which the gentlemen did not disdain. It regarded a supper-room. At the time of the ballroom's being built, suppers had not been in question; and a small card-room adjoining, was the only addition. What was to be done?
...but really I begin now to comprehend that a married woman has many things to call her attention. I believe I was half an hour this morning shutup with my housekeeper.

Mrs Elton then said, "Nobody can think less of dress in general than I do - but upon such an occasion as this, when everybody's eyes are so much upon me, and in compliment to the Westons - who I have no doubt are giving this ball chiefly to do me honour - I would not wish to be inferior to others. And I see very few pearles in the room except mine - 
...he was therefore later than he had intended; and being on foot, was unseen by the whole party till almost close to them. The terror which the woman and boy had been creating in Harriet was then their own portion.

I shall be sure to say three dull things as soon as ever I open my mouth, shant I? (looking around wth the most good-humoured dependence on everybody's assent ).

Emma even jumped with surprise - and, horror-struck, exclaimed, "Jane Fairfax! - Good God! you are not serious? You do not mean it?"

She longed for the serenity they might gradually introduce; and on Mr Perry's coming in soon after dinner, with a disengaged hour to give her father, she lost no time in hurrying into the shrubbery -...

"My dearest Emma," said he, "for dearest you will always be, whatever the event of this hour's conversation, my dearest, most beloved Emma - tell me at once.
I was late; I met her walking home by herself, and wanted to walk with her, but she would not suffer it. She absolutely refused to allow me, which I then thought most unreasonable.

"I met Williams Larkins," continued Mr Elton, "as I got near the house, and he told me I should not find his master at home, but I did not believe him - William seemed rather out of humour. He did not know what was come to his master lately, he said, but he could hardly ever get the speech of him.

When Mr Weston joined the party, however, and when the baby was fetched, there was no longer a want of subject or animation -

C.E. Brock illustrated Jane Austen's novels such as Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Sense & Sensibility,  Northanger Abbey, Persuasion, and Emma. Thus a 10-volume set of Jane Austen's novels by J.M. Dent with illustrations by C.E. and H.M. Brock appeared in 1898 with great success. These "pen and ink drawings tinted in watercolour" gave a more exact and detailed period representation than ever before.
However, we should not forget that C.E.Brock illustrated adventure books, too, as we shall see in an future post.

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