English Arts and Crafts Movement

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William Morris (1834 - 1896), the British craftsman, designer, writer, typographer, and socialist, born in Walthamstow, was a businessman's son, Morris was educated at Oxford, met Edward Burne-Jones and Dante Gabriel Rossetti, and as they were all artists, they formed a group called Brotherhood, and he even thought of participating in a crusade against then existing art and culture, which nauseated them all.


In the post-Napoleonic period, there was unrest in the European air and the younger people lived in expectation of another revolution. Things were fairly unsettled when the Victorian revival was initiated. Morris wrote The Defence of Guinevere and other poems while painting frescoes for the Oxford Union. The pre-Raphaelite group and their company, Morris, Marshall, Faulkner & Co. brought revolution in designs, carpets, wall papers, furniture, tapestries etc. there was a complete revolution in public taste. Morris also wrote prose like the Life and Death of Jason, The Earthly Paradise, Volksunga Saga, political writings like Death Song, Chants for Socialists, The Pilgrims of Hope, Dream of John Ball, News from Nowhere. Later, he was more dedicated to Socialism and wrote Socialism, its growth and outcome, Manifesto of English Socialists, The Wood beyond the World, Well at the World's End.
"Beauty, which is what is meant by art, using the word in its widest sense, is, I contend, no mere accident to human life, which people can take or leave as they choose, but a positive necessity of life" said William Morris, The Beauty of Life, 1880 ...
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