Maurice Greiffenhagen

Maurice William Greiffenhagen (1862–1931) was a designer, illustrator, and portrait painter. He was born in London on 15 December 1862. Greiffenhagen was highly influenced by the Pre-Raphaelites, and particularly Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1828‑1882) and the Venetians. However, his loose and gestural style and economy of line also suggests the influence of caricaturist Phil May. Greiffenhagen attended the Royal Academy Schools beginning in 1878 where he was extremely successful, winning the Armitage Prize and cartoon medal among other accommodations. Beginning in 1887 he became increasingly involved in book and periodical illustration. He contributed to Judy, Fun, Black and White The Butterfly, The Pall Mall Budget, The Illustrated London News, The Unicorn, Pick-Me-Up, Daily Chronicle, Ally Sloper’s Half Holiday, The Sketch, The Lady’s Pictorial, and The Windsor Magazine. Greiffenhagen was also a prolific book illustrator but is best remembered for illustrating Haggard. Greiffenhagen and Haggard had a close and personal relationship. In fact, the artist named his son Rider in Haggard’s honor. Sadly, Rider Greiffenhagen died in a submarine during WWI. Haggard hung several of Greiffenhagen's She illustrations in his Ditchingham, Norfolk home. Greiffenhagen served as Headmaster, Life Department, for the Glasgow School of Art from 1906 to 1929. He decorated the British Pavilions for the 1925 Paris Exhibition and Antwerp exhibition in 1930. Greiffenhagen exhibited at the Royal Academy, Royal Society of British Artists, Royal Institute of Oil Painters, and the New English Art Club. He became an Associate Member of the Royal Academy in 1916, and a Royal Academician in 1922. Greiffenhagen died at St. John’s Wood, London, on 26 December 1931.

Further Reading


Chamot, Mary, Dennis Farr and Martin Butlin. “Maurice Greiffenhagen.” The Modern British Paintings, Drawings and Sculpture. 2 Vols. London: Oldbourne Press, 1964.


Houfe, Simon. “Greiffenhagen, Maurice RA 1862–1931.” The Dictionary of British Book Illustrators and Caricaturists 1800-1914. Woodbridge, Suffolk: Antique Collectors’ Club, 1981. 325.


Johnson, Jane and A. Greutzner. “Greiffenhagen, Maurice William 1862–1931.” Dictionary of British Artists 1880-1940. Suffolk: Baron, 1984. 214.


Little, J. Stanley. "Maurice Greiffenhagen and his Work." The Studio. 9 (1897): 235-245. Google Books. Web. 12 Nov. 2013.


Pocock, Tom. Rider Haggard and the Lost Empire. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1993. 90, 112, 229, 230, 237.


Temple, A.G. "Maurice Greiffenhagen" The Art Journal. 56 (1894): 225-229. Google Books. Web. 16 Oct. 2013.


Waters, Grant M.. “Greiffenhagen, Maurice William, R.A. (1862–1931).” Dictionary of British Artists Working 1900- 1950. Eastbourne: Eastbourne Fine Art, 1975. 140-141.

Illustrations by Maurice Greiffenhagen



Andthus1889244 And thus I left her. Cleopatra. 1st UK edition. 1889
Andthus244 And thus I left her.. Cleopatra. New Impression. 1927
Andturning97 And turning half round, they one and all grasped the handles of their spears.. She, A History of Adventure. New Impression (1911) Reissue. 1912
Andwhile137 And while I spoke, watching the stars, she sat and watched my face.. Cleopatra. New Impression. 1927

Andwhile1889126 And while I spoke watching the stars, she sat and watched my face. Cleopatra. 1st UK edition. 1889
Anomen1889119 An omen, royal Harmachis.. Cleopatra. 1st UK edition. 1889
Anomen120 An omen, royal Harmachis.. Cleopatra. New Impression. 1927
Areyou132 'Are you the Khania's other friend?'. Ayesha. 1st UK edition. 1905

Areyouwindsormagazine505 'Are you the Khania's other friend?'. Ayesha. The Windsor Magazine, vol. 21. March 1905
Artthou35 'Art thou there, friend!' cried the wanderer.. The World's Desire. New Edition. 1894
Artthoucollierfrontispiece 'Art thou there, friend?' cried the wanderer. The World's Desire. Authorized Edition. None
Asayeshanydoubleday1905246 As Ayesha passed her, the maddened Khania drew a hidden dagger and struck. Ayesha. 1st US edition. 1905