Pioneering study of Frederick Rolfe's 'Arcadian' photographs
It's a bit hard to know what to make of Frederick Rolfe ("Baron Corvo"). One of the principle biographies of him is entitled Corvo: Saint or Madman?; if saint was more his own estimate of himself, madman was more the estimate of his contemporaries. [...]
They hail him as a pioneer in modern literature who broke through the conventions of the Victorian novel in intent and content, and remained unappreciated, critically and commercially, in his time. (In this his story would be parallel to that of Vincent Van Gogh - to whom, curiously, Rolfe is similar in other ways: both had a failed religious calling which became an artistic calling; both had a somewhat dubious sexuality; both responded to the call of Mediterranean lands.) If all else fails, there is the 'How many of the hundreds of authors who published during the Victorian and Edwardian period are still being read today?' argument. In other words, our enthusiasm makes him important.
source: Book review 'Pioneering Study of Frederick Rolfe's 'Arcadian' Photographs' by D.H. Mader; About the book 'The Photographs of Frederick Rolfe - Baron Corvo - 1860-1913' by Donald Rosenthal; www.intermale.nl/rolfe.html; Intermale.nl; February 2009