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IN HOMES AND NOVELS: EARLY ITALIAN PICTURES IN ENGLAND FROM EARLY NINETEENTH TO EARLY TWENTIETH CENTURY

 

Elisa Camporeale

 

 

From the beginning of the nineteenth century, Early Italian pictures were hung in English private homes and, later, in public galleries and exhibitions. The birth and growth of the interest in the Italian «Primitives» in the English world are illustrated in this paper through insights into the cultural and social scenarios of the time and through a review of the approaches of salient early English collectors. Such appreciation, destined to grow into an infatuation in the early twentieth century, is here monitored also through its reflections in British fiction in the works of, among others, Thomas Hardy, George Eliot, Edward Morgan Forster, Vernon Lee, David Herbert Lawrence.