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Howard Pyle was born in Wilmington, Delaware, in 1853. He began his professional career in 1876 in New York City as a magazine illustrator. Afte his picture, "The Wreck in the Offing," was accepted by Harper's Weekly
, his advance was rapid, and before he returned to Wilmington in 1880 he was well established as an artist and had formed strong ties with many of the leading magazines of the time. Notable among his commissions in this line are his pictures for Woodrow Wilson's Washington
(1897) and History of the American People
(1902), both of which first appeared in periodicals.
But Pyle's reputation and his permanent place in the world of art rest not so much upon the pictures he drew for the works of other writers as upon his own tales and their illustrations. In 1883 The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood was published. This was the first of a long line of subsequently famous children's classics, written and illustrated by Pyle: Pepper and Salt (1886), The Wonder Clock (1888), Otto of the Silver Hand (1888), Men of Iron (1892), Twilight Land (1895), The Story of Jack Ballister's Fortunes (1895), and four volumes of Arthurian legend (1903, 1905, 1907, 1910).
Toward the end of his career, Pyle gradually gave up illustration and devoted himself to mural decoration. "The Battle of Nashville" in the state capital of Minnesota (1906) was his first important mural and was followed by commissions in other states. In 1910 he travelled to Italy to study art, and died in Florence the next year.
- Howard Pyle :: Biographical information on churchman.org