I love stumbling across new sources for lovelies! Today I somehow came across the website for the Delaware Art Museum's Pre-Raphaelite collection. I'm not even done searching through all the stunning art on there, and I'm enjoying myself immensely.
This is my favorite image I've seen so far. This is Millais' artwork of his lovely (and infamously backstoried) wife Effie. It's the most stunning portrait I've ever seen of her. You simply must click the image to enlarge it to get the full effect of those eyes...it's called A Highland Lassie.
The love triangle between John Ruskin, Effie Gray, and John Everett Millais is one of the most famous in Pre-Raphaelite history. Effie was originally married to John Ruskin, a famous patron of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, but the marriage was never consummated, reportedly because when Ruskin saw Effie on her wedding night, he was appalled to discover that real women weren't like Classical statues....they had hair...you know...down there! How outrageous! Ruskin treated her extremely poorly, and when he invited Millais on a trip to Scotland and brought his wife along. Although Millais at first viewed the relationship between Ruskin and Effie as being ideally romantic, it didn't take long in close quarters with them to realize that there was serious trouble in the marriage. There is no indication that Millais and Effie ever acted on their mutual feelings while she was still married to Ruskin, but when Effie later requested and obtained an annulment on the grounds of 'incurable impotency,' she and Millais married, and found their happily ever after.
It's amazing to me how straight out of a movie or fiction book the relationships of the Pre-Raphaelites were! I've seen numerous portraits of Effie, but none that really made her seem as real a person as the one above.