Two Pictures I Would Like Best To Own Series–Part 3

Hello, again History Lovers,

A farm woman from Illinois responds to the request put out by The Farmer’s Wife–A Magazine For Farm Women in March of 1923 for letters regarding the Two Pictures I Would Like Best To Own. Her first choice depicts the Bible story of young Jesus teaching in the temple in Jerusalem. For her second picture, Mrs. W.G.F. chose a painting that was featured previously in this series–Dance of the Nymphs by Jean-Baptist Camille Corot.

What would you hang above your mantle?

Silent Influence on Children

Christ in the Temple 1881, Heinrich Hofmann–German Painter

“The subject of appropriate pictures for our home has been of importance to me for some time and the selection of the two named here are the result of much thought and study. Christ in the Temple by Heinrich Hofmann, like most of the pictures by that famous painter, is an illustration of a familiar passage in the Bible.

One notes the simple robe and the exceptionally beautiful hands of the child but attention centers on the face, a face that is noble, true, just, kind, and firm, a face that inspires, that emanates purity, that gives strength, and confidence. His large eyes are filled with wonder at what he is learning and with the knowledge that he is imparting. Around him are grouped the learned men, one face expressing grace, attentive interest; another showing eagerness to protest; another is full of marvel at the young boy’s learning; and fourth has a stern look, while the last bears an expression of curiosity and perhaps contempt. My hope is that such a picture on our wall will have a tremendous, silent influence in molding the lives of our children—and not theirs alone for it is a picture with a wonderful spirit we all can catch.

The Dance of the Nymphs 1850, Camille Corot–French Painter, Romanticism Style

Dance of the Nymphs by Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot is the second picture I chose. What cheer and how full of joyous spirit of a beautiful morning in the spring is the Dance of the Nymphs.

One can almost hear the birds sing and the leaves rustle, can almost see the sparkling dewdrops, the trees so exquisitely beautiful in their foliage, and the flowers blooming by the wayside. The nymphs, gayly dancing, seem to be ushering the beautiful dawn. To me, The Dance of the Nymphs is a gloriously beautiful morning in the country—nothing more, nothing less. It is a picture that is a “good friend to live with.” It is cheerful, wholesome, and human.” –Mrs. W.G.F., Illinois


The above article was originally published in The Farmer’s Wife–A Magazine For Farm Women, March 1923, Page 359; Webb Publishing Company, St. Paul, Minnesota. Articles may be edited for length and clarity.

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