Perpetuating the memory of one of the greatest men of the Victorian age

Coffee with a Curator – online talk

May 18, 2021 11.00-11.30

Join Curator Helen Elletson to explore some of the fascinating objects in The William Morris Society’s collection

Earlier this year, the William Morris Society was generously presented with photographs of George McDonald and John Ruskin, and the signature of McDonald on The Retreat headed writing paper. These three donations connect the three famous Victorians of our talk with The Retreat, better known as Kelmscott House and now the Headquarters of the William Morris Society.

Described as the founding father of fantasy literature, Macdonald wrote some of his best-known fairy stories whilst living at his delightful riverside home. His plays and parties attracted some of the most influential minds of the nineteenth century and it was also here where he acted as go-between in Ruskin’s long-standing courtship with Rose La Touche. Please join us as we travel back to Victorian Hammersmith to discover the fascinating stories about McDonald and his large family, his interesting relationship with Ruskin, and the sad reason behind his decision to leave his beloved home. We’ll also find out how William Morris came to learn of McDonald’s departure, and why he decided to rent The Retreat, despite deep reservations from family and friends.

We have a limited number of tickets for this event. If you make a booking but find you are unable to attend, please cancel your booking to allow another person to attend the talk. Thank you.

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