English historical genre painter and illustrator, Marcus Stone was born on 4th July, 1840, and according to the ‘Dictionary of Victorian Painters‘, he was trained by his father, Frank Stone ARA. Marcus began to exhibit at the Royal Academy, before he was eighteen years of age. A few years later he illustrated, with much success, books by Charles Dickens “Our Mutual Friend”, Anthony Trollope, and other writers who were friends of the Stone family.
Stone was elected an Associate of the Royal Academy in 1877, and Academician in 1887. In his earlier pictures, he dealt much with historical incidents, but in his later work, he focussed on a particular type of dainty sentiment, treated with much charm, refinement and executive skill.
He mainly painted genre scenes set in 18th century or Empire costume and his themes were mostly dramatic, sentimental or occasionally humorous. Some of the titles of his works include: “Rejected“, “The First Love-Letter“, “A Stolen Kiss” and “Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder” (see above).
One of his canvases is in Tate Gallery in London. Most of his works have been engraved, and medals were awarded to him at exhibitions in all parts of the world.
A blue plaque commemorates Stone at his house at 8 Melbury Road, Holland Park. Stone married Laura Brown, the daughter of the Zealand merchant William Brown.
- Although Marcus Stone died on 24 March, 1921, his artistic legacy lives on as evidenced by this precious Stone!