H. R. Millar

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Harold Millar redirects here. For those of a similar name, see Harold Miller (disambiguation)
H. R. Millar
Harold Robert Millar

Known forChildren's Literature

Harold Robert Millar (1869 – 1942) was a prominent and prolific Scottish graphic artist and illustrator of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. He is best known for his illustrations of children's books and fantasy literature.[1] "His work...has a lively, imaginative charm and a distinctive sense of design."[2]

Life and Work[edit]

Cian and Ethnea, from Charles Squire's Celtic Myth and Legend (1905)

A native of Dumfriesshire, Millar first pursued civil engineering before deciding upon an artistic career. He then studied at the Wolverhampton Art School and the Birmingham School of Art, and established his career as a magazine illustrator with Punch, Good Words, and other periodicals of the day.

Millar illustrated fables for the Strand Magazine, and anthologies of tales, The Golden Fairy Book, The Silver Fairy Book, The Diamond Fairy Book, and The Ruby Fairy Book. He illustrated books by a wide range of British authors of his time, including Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch, Robert Louis Stevenson, and Rudyard Kipling. He had an extensive working relationship with E. Nesbit, and has been called "the most sympathetic and perhaps the most talented of her illustrators."[3]

Apart from fantasy and children's books, Millar drew pictures for works like Kate Lawson's Highways and Homes of Japan (1910) and Arthur Radclyffe Dugmore's African Jungle Life (1928). Millar was a noted collector of Eastern art and exotic and ancient weapons, and employed his interest and knowledge in these areas in his artwork.

A partial list of the books Millar illustrated includes:


  1. ^ Stephen Pickett, Victorian Fantasy, second edition, Waco, TX, Baylor University Press, 2005; p. xi and ff.
  2. ^ John Clute and John Grant, The Encyclopedia of Fantasy, New York, Macmillan, 1999; p. 646.
  3. ^ Marcus Crouch, Treasure Seekers and Borrowers: Children's Books in Britain, 1900–1960, London, The Library Association, 1962; p. 15.

External links[edit]