In an era when long-standing social
and artistic traditions constrained most women artists to certain
types of subjects, Elizabeth Shippen Green was contracted to illustrate
a wide variety of stories. Concentrating solely on the story at
hand, she sought to create images that captured the most dramatic
moments of the story, as she has done in this scene, one of the
few oil paintings she created. Green's ability to depict this
"masculine" subject in vivid colors attests to her confidence
and success in fulfilling her artistic vision.
Once more the herald set
the trumpet to his lips, ca. 1910
Oil and watercolor on board
Published in Harper's Magazine,
Prints & Photographs
LC-USZ62-54786 ; LC-USZC4-614 (14)
Once more the herald set the trumpet
to his lips and blew
In Richard Le Gallienne.
The Maker of Rainbows and other
Fairy Tales and Fables.
New York and London: Harper
and Brothers, 1912
LC-USZ62-128612 ; LC-USZC4-9404 (17)
The Maker of Rainbows and Other
Fairy Tales and Fables by Richard Le Gallienne incorporated
this illustration by Green in 1912. This reproduction allows one
to view Green's illustrations as they were most commonly experienced
by the public--in published books and magazines alongside stories.
Examples of Green's late work,
the illustrations for this special edition of a work about Shakespeare's
plays, highlight her versatility as an illustrator who conscientiously
reconstructs details of period dress, as seen in the frontispiece.
The ornamental title page underscores her gifts as a decorative
designer. She creates a pleasing harmony between boldly outlined
figures that allude to tragedy and comedy, for example, and finely
drawn decorative details.
"The Presentation of the Book"
(frontispiece) and ornamented title page
In Charles and Mary Lamb.
Tales from Shakespeare.
Philadelphia: David Mackay, 1922
LC-USZ62-128607 ; LC-USZC4-9403 (16)
Nonsense verse for letter K and
ornamental letter K
In Huger Elliott and
Elizabeth Shippen Green Elliott.
An Alliterative Alphabet Aimed at
Philadelphia: David McKay, 1947
LC-USZ62-128608 ; LC-USZC4-9405 (18)
Late in her career, Green and her
husband Huger Elliott collaborated on an abecedarius, for which
he composed nonsense verses and she created fanciful illustrations.
Friends observed that each of the couple possessed a lively, witty
sense of humor and love of wordplay. In the pages for the initial
K, East meets West in verse and image as Kublai Khan greets the
popular British actress Fanny Kemble.