An icon of the Victorian era and a man knowing not a little about genius himself, Ruskin was cited as an inspiration by, among others, Tolstoy, Proust, Gandhi and, of course, Oscar Wilde. In addition to founding the discipline of modern art criticism and rescuing from obscurity such cornerstones of art history as J.M.W. Turner, he wrote prolifically, publishing over 250 works. Among his many famed theories was an expostulation that each generation boasts just a few men of genius, who differ from their contemporaries both in social relations and in their attitudes to study and the products of men. Here we collate, from across the vast body of Ruskin's work, the gems of this theory, for the benefit both of those fascinated by genius and those who might aspire to this status.
John Ruskin (1819-1900) is one of Britain's most celebrated writers on art and architecture, and was enormously influential for schools including the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. He is also remembered as a social critic, poet, and an artist in his own right.