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a chain of reasoning which might possibly be fallacious) which the writer before me, does not, and I suppose cannot, and has recourse to the lowest artifice of the lowest vulgar; that of filling up the deficient measure of his argument with an overflow of invective. He mingles reverence for the antique, with scandalous scurrility, and seems to inagine that your readers will be agreeably surprised while he discloses how near Billingsgate the Castalian fuụnt may bubble. By the shallow artifice of passing over three pages, in order to bring together and confound, literal with figurative expression, he bopes to impose an idea upon those who have not read Mr. I's book, that that gentleman's “manner of writing is palpably obscure and grossly contradictory :" now, he who essays to convict another of false metaphor, should at least be careful of his own, yet we find your apologist prating in p. 25, of & Sun striking with lightning a tiara, &c. and darting his meridian rays across the Alps. That the public might see the Sun, this kind apologist holds a candle, and Hattering himself that he has caught the public attention, he here stops to snuff it, with
professional flourish that might have done honour to the tirst theatrical candle-sniffer of the past century.
This writer appears to be actuated--I had almost said Blinded, by a particular interest, in inculcating that the Chalk manner is the superior mode of engraving. If he were some wretched dotter of the lowest class who was fearful of being left out of employ, he could not shew more anxiety that Mr. L. and all the world should join in his anthem of · Glory be to thee 0 Dot!'
I say not these things however, from any dislike of his favourite branch of the Art, but of base and ungenerous behaviour. I will even allow that this man (if he be a man) may possibly on this point of the superiority of Chalk engraving be in the right. He inay be able to shew that Bartolozzi's chalk engravings are better than his Clytie, his Circumcision, his Silence, or his Diploma ; he may prove to the satisfaction of persons of the purest taste that Woollett ought to have dotted after Wilson, and onght to have dotted the death of General Wolfe and battle of La Hogue. I only desire you to notice,
in your next number, of those four pages, (including the Note on Alderman Boydell's pamphlet) of Mr. Landseer's Third Lecture, which this write; has made the pretence for his attack?
Sir, that he has not yet proved these things, nor disproved a single syllable of what Mr. L. has advanced on the subject before us.
It may not be less worthy of our notice, that not. withstanding the acrimony of his hostility towards the Lecturer, I cannot find that Mr. L. has any where declared an opinion as to the superior mode of engraving. Perhaps he conceives that such a preference is unnecessary, or would be indelicate or invidious. I would not however anticipate what I dare believe he will one day communicate to the public-for it is obvious from his book that he has been prevented from delivering what he intended, on the subject of modern engraving: I do not suppose that he will allow himself to be forced into any premature disclosure of his sentiments, or that he will condescend to notice at all such attacks as those of your correspondent; but I think you may infer froin what he has already published, that his opinion on this point, does not materially differ from my own, which may be expressed by a slight alteration of a celebrated couplet
For modes of Sculpturing let Fools contest
That which is best administered, is best. To conclude, Mr. Editor, it requires no great depth of penetration to perceive--not that this Apologist is in the wrong—but that he himself entertains more than a latent suspicion that he is not in the right; for nothing can betray more the conscious baseness of a man who believes he is maintaining a bad cause, than that common artifice of crafty and venal advocates, of attacking the character of their opponent, when they cannot controvert his argument or bear down the facts he produces: and the rancour with which it is executed, is always in proportion to the baseness in which it is conceived. Conscious of being weak in truth, a bad man foolishly flatters himself that he shall prove strong in falsehood. I have said thus much sir, that such characters as this Apologist may not in future abuse the confidence of your readers, nor soil the polish of your Cabinet.
And am, Sir,
Your obedient Servant, 22nd Aug. 1807.
MR. LANDSEER'S REMARKS ON CHALK ENGRAVING. « Stippling is a mode of producing prints by means of combinations of dots, which are either round or multangular, as the conical point, or point of the graver, ployed to form them. Stippling with the graver, was occasionally practised both by Martin Schoen and Albert Durer, in the very infancy of the art : the latter employed it in imitating the texture of beaver hats, and other similar objects. Perceiving that it was peculiarly expressive of softuess, Agostino Veneziano, and Boulanger, sometines stippled their flesh, and Julio Campagnola bis back-grounds also. Almost a century afterward, it was observed by De Marteau that by etching some of the dots and engraving others, very successful imitations of drawings hatched with chalk, might be produced ; and hence it has been called the CHALK manner of engraving.
“ lo England, the chalk manner is new, having been imported from Paris not many years ago, t by Ryland, who employed it so as rather to imitate such-drawings as are done with crayons, or stumped, than such as are hatched with chalk. It was run after, however, with avidity by the public, chiefly because it was new, for it was but a sort of retrograde and degenerate novelty as it was practised by the immediate imitators of Ryland. Yet, with so much heedless anxiety was it pursued, that people never stopt to consider whether even red-chalk or stumped drawings themselves (of which these prints were professed imitations) were so yood representations of nature, or afforded a more happy and efficient ineans of transfusing the soul of painting, than the art of engraving in lines, as it was then exercised by Bartolozzi, Vivares, Woollett, and Strange, who were all living at the time; but-Ryland and novelty led the way, and fashion and Bartolozzi followed.
Perhaps Bartolozzi perceived that this stippling inode of engraving, was capable of more easily bestowing that soft blending and infantile indefinity, which are conspicuous in his style ;- perhaps he recollected the fate of Miiton, Corregio, and Collins, and saw that the existing state of the public taste, would neither appreciate nor reward the solitary efforts of a line-engraver who should regulate his aims by exalted views of the perfertibility of his art; and perhaps he knew that in executing his plates in the chalk manner, he could much sooner avail himself of the assistance of his pupils than in the more arduous practice of engraving in lines, and thus perform more rapidly the numerous commissions of the print dealers. However this may have been, certain it is that he bowed down his great abilities, and made a willing or a reluctant sacrifice of principle on the altar of fashion: an aberration which persons of real taste have not ceased to regret.
t About fifty.
“ The print dealers upon mistaken notions of private advantage, are ever exhausting the permanent hopes of the art : they are always ready, like Mr. Windham's savage, to cut down the tree in order to obtain its fruit.
The novelty of chalk engraving, by calling forth their ignorant exertions, coincided with, and increased this mania of the public, and except for the landscapes of Vivares, Rooker, and Woollett, which required and exhibited, more vigour and inore detail of drawing than stippling could bestow; and that now and then an historical engraving by Strange and Bartolozzi, and the series from Mr. West's History of England, (of which the death of General Wolfe was the first,) attested the existence and maintained the dignity of the legitimate art-with these illustrious exceptions, I say the engravers of Great Britain were compelled to feel and silently to acknowledge, that since ignorance was bliss, 'twas folly to be wise.'
“ For myself,--though very young at the time, I could not help seeing with concern, that this re-discovery of, and rage for dotting, had happened at a most unfortunate period for the progress of engraving : It seemed to me as if a premature dotage had overtaken its manly prime. It has since turned out to be only one of those diseases which arise from the redundancy of particular humours-a sort of influenza, for which (if my opinion of Academies be right) the Royal Academy of Arts should have provided a remedy, but which the natural vigour of the constitution of engraving has since overcomne.
“ The dealers in fashionable articles, may compared to dogs, that after a longer or a shorter chase, generally hunt their game to death. The Royal Academy had cleared no roads, and set up no directing posts, and even those among the well-intending public who were VOL. II.
fondest of the sport--following these hounds, lost their way in the intricate and desultory chase. As at the Easter hunt, some stop short, others are thrown from their hobbies, and others again follow the dogs to the last-so it has been with regard to the fashion of engraving so as to imitate chalk or crayon drawings. At length, however, this interesting art (of which, if I seem, I only seem to make sport) fetching a few noble bounds, has escaped from the toils of its pursuers, and pow roves at leisure, when, as a means of translating pictures, it is more worthy than ever of being pursued.
Upon what principles I am led to perceive that this province of engraving has recently disclosed more various and entensive, and richer tracts than it was formerly
* Ina pamphlet lately printed, under the signature of Mr. Josiah Boydell, which professes to contain “a Plan for the encouragement of Arts, &c. (which is in my opinion one of the most radically defective plans ever attempted to be obtruded on the public, and founded in such gross mistake, that it might with more propriety be termed a Plan for the discouragement of the Arts) we find Mr. Boydell very free in reprobating the “dotting manner,” and in censuring the public for their bad taste in ergraving. In speaking of the different modes of engraving, his pamphlet might have sparkled with a little useful light, if he had been able and willing to have enlightened his readers on the subject; Yet, he gives no reasons why one manner of engraving is to be preferred to another : nor endeavours to inform, nor to reform the Public Taste, but by reproaching that public with having been “the promoters of such publications, as he now affects to contemn, i. e. such as are engraven in the manner of his own Shakspeare. He seems to expect that we should now believe line-engraving to be the superior art, for no other reason than he formerly expected or wished us to believe that chalk engraving was so. Upon venturing some years ago, to speak in favour of engraving in lines, at the Shakspeare gallery, I was told, hy a person related to the present alderman, that, compared with the mode of engraving of which he now finds it expedient to speak as above, “line engraving was but an inferior art wa kind of tattooing, which was going fast out of fashion,”- -and this was spoken as if fashion were known and acknowledged to be the arbiter of art.
The truth now appears to be, that the conductors of the Shakspeare kept the dotting manner in fashion as long as they could, (let the larger engravings for Boydell's Shakspeare contradict me, if I am wrong) for reasons which he himself divulges in the pamphlet before me, namely-because “the difference both as to time and expence is as three to one,” and because they therefore found it “ answer to the publisher,” and that now the public taste is emancipating itself from the slavery of fashion, and that Messrs. Boydell and Co. find themselves in danger of being left in the minority, they