Family Group Sheet
Family Group Sheet
SpouseEthel Gladys HUXLEY
FatherThomas Henry HUXLEY (1825-1895)
MotherHenrieta Anne HEATHORN (1825-1915)
Notes for John COLLIER
John Collier was not a Huxley by birth, but by marriage twice over: both his wives were daughters of THH. The Honourable John Maler Collier OBE RP ROI (January 27, 1850–April 11, 1934) was a writer and painter in the Pre-Raphaelite style. He was one of the leading portrait painters of his generation. The National Portrait Gallery's collection of his portraiture is weak, but in 2007 it bought his first wife's portrait of him painting her.

Collier's views on religion and ethics are interesting for their comparison with the views of THH and Julian Huxley, both of whom gave Romanes lectures on that subject. In The religion of an artist (1926) Collier explains "It [the book] is mostly concerned with ethics apart from religion... I am looking forward to a time when ethics will have taken the place of religion... My religion is really negative. [The benefits of religion] can be attained by other means which are less conducive to strife and which put less strain on upon the reasoning faculties". On secular morality: "My standard is frankly utilitarian. As far as morality is intuitive, I think it may be reduced to an inherent impulse of kindliness towards our fellow citizens". On the idea of God: "People may claim without much exaggeration that the belief in God is universal. They omit to add that superstition, often of the most degraded kind, is just as universal". And "An omnipotent Deity who sentences even the vilest of his creatures to eternal torture is infinitely more cruel than the cruellest man". And on the Church: "To me, as to most Englishmen, the triumph of Roman Catholicism would mean an unspeakable disaster to the cause of civilization". His views, then, were very close to the agnosticism of THH and the humanism of Julian Huxley.

Collier and his first wife Marian (Mady) had one child, Joyce, a portrait miniaturist. She married twice, first to Leslie Crawshay-Williams, whose family were South Wales ironmasters. They had two children Rupert Crawshay-Williams and Gillian. Joyce next married Drysdale Kilburn; they had a son, Nicholas Kilburn.
Last Modified 24 Jun 2012Created 28 Jan 2018 using Reunion for Macintosh