Euphemia (Effie) Gray

(Mrs Ruskin, Lady Millais)

1828 - 1897

Artistic model at the centre of a Victorian love triangle. Born in Perth, one of fifteen children of a lawyer, Gray was raised at Bowerswell, a small mansion at the foot of Kinnoull Hill which her father had bought from John James Ruskin, father of art critic John Ruskin (1819 - 1900). This connection led to Effie marrying Ruskin in 1848 and moving to London. It was not a happy marriage. Through Ruskin, she met the artist John Everett Millais (1829-96). Millais accompanied the couple to Scotland to paint Ruskin's portrait. All three stayed together at Brig o' Turk in the Trossachs for nearly four months. They became involved in a scandalous love triangle. In 1854 Ruskin divorced his wife and she married Millais the following year. The couple lived at Annat Lodge and had eight children. She managed his career and helped him with his work.

On Millais' death she returned to Bowerswell, where she died 16 months later. She lies buried in the churchyard surrounding Kinnoull Aisle. In 2014, she was portrayed in an eponymous film by Emma Thompson.

Use the tabs on the right of this page to see other parts of this entry arrow

If you have found this information useful please consider making
a donation to help maintain and improve this resource. More info...

By using our site you agree to accept cookies, which help us serve you better