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The Vale Of Rest

John Everett Millais

The Vale Of Rest

John Everett Millais
  • Date: 1858 - 1859
  • Style: Realism
  • Genre: genre painting
  • Media: oil
  • Dimensions: 102.9 x 172.7 cm
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The Vale of Rest (1858–1859) is a painting by John Everett Millais.

The painting is of a graveyard, as night is coming on. Beyond the graveyard wall there is a low chapel with a bell. In the foreground of the scene, there are two nuns – the heads of the two nuns are level and symmetrical. They are Roman Catholic nuns, one of the nuns holds a rosary, and one of the nuns is digging a grave. Her forearm and body strain under the weight of a shovelful of earth. The other, overseeing the work, turns with a look of apprehension and anguish.

Art critic Tom Lubbock said of the painting:

The painting is one of those satirised in Florence Claxton's watercolour The Choice of Paris – an idyll (1860). Claxton criticized "the perceived ugliness of early pre-Raphaelite paintings by exaggerating details from many of their works, including The Vale of Rest, Claudio and Isabella, and, lying in the grass, Alice Gray from Spring"

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