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teenth century, (ralled, by the Italians, Cinquecentisti) when sculpture and architecture attained the same high degree as painting.
The art of painting, which was before in infancy, enslaved, ignorant, unformed, and almost deformed, may be said to have attained, under the direction of Cimabue, its boyhood, since he was the first who changed its rude character, introduced more suitable drawing, and gave some attitude to his figures. Under Giotto it grew to adolescence; we mark grace in the countenance, delicacy in the colouring, motion in the figures, which commenced to be conspicuous, since he dared to foreshorten some limbs in his paintings. Under Masaccio the art finally attained its manhood; we see in his paintings, not only the body which is set in action, but also the motions of the soul which shine through those of the body; and this speaking and expressive painting is still more elevated by a good drawing and correctly diffused light and shade. In this way the art of painting progressed, together with her kindred arts, gradually, to the highest perfection, which we admire in Raphael and Michel Angelo.
The above division of the general history of European painting into three periods—we ask pardon of our author, if we must conscientiously disagree with him—is founded upon the true capital revolutions in the course of its cultivation. The first contains the history of the revival and correction. This period, in which the art made uninterrupted progress, may be called its most glorious epoch. Although this art commenced to rise in different parts of Europe at a later period than in Italy, we may still date its commencement from Cimabue, because incontestable proofs exist, that painting was at that time no where uncultivated.
The second period from Raphael to the Carracci, was of a very short duration; yet, during that period, the Italian taste was not only extended through the whole of Europe, but it was also enriched by a number of different styles and manners. But this variety was rather disadvantageous to the art, for it lost by it much of its purity, sunk with rapidity, and would almost have relapsed into its former ignorance, had it not been restored to its perfection by the Carracci and their school.
The third period is more difficult to treat, on account of the innumerable varieties of styles and manners which issued from the different schools formed in that period. And since we are unable to bring this period down toour still living artists, we cannot conclude it more gloriously than by stopping with the im mortal Mengs.
Our author has followed the plan and method of the celebrated Zanetti*. However excellent these two works may be, coming from the pens of authors we highly esteem, and who have acquired a great reputation by their still more distinguished and learned works, we cannot be blind to defects, which could, in our opinion, have been avoided. Zanetti treats of the Venetian painting only. He is precise, and his remarks betray a very substantial and correct judgment, but he has fallen into the error of naming all the painters of whose pencils there are any specimens, however mediocre, at Venice. His description reminds us of some genealogical gallery, where appear the portraits alike of all, whether wise or foolish, noble or ignoble, in whose veins has circled the sacred blood. Moreover, he was not satisfied with citing the best productions of each artist, but he gives a complete catalogue of all their works, without any exception, whereby his book is rendered exceedingly tiresome.
The author under review has fallen into the contrary error, and has sinned, in that he is too brief and general in his records, not mentioning even the dates of the births and deaths of the greatest masters, not connecting the history of the arts with that of politics, and being too summary in his details. Yet these deficiencies may be excused from the destination of the work, since he dedicated it to the Grand Duchess of Tuscany, Maria Louisa of Bourbon, wishing to furnish that lady with a history of the arts, which might be read, pleasantly, like a novel or play. He, himself,t says, in his preface, that he intended to write but a pocket manual for travellers; we can, consequently, not expect from such a work, any profound analysis of difficult points, or any penetration into the depths of the arts. Besides, Lanzi himself was no artist, and was obliged, as he himself acknowledges, to have recourse to the judgments of some artists who were his friends.
Our author's divisions and arrangement into schools and epochs, do not please us. The accession of a monarch to his crown, or his death, and the period w hen an artist flourishes
* Delia Pitturna Veneziana, &c. Lanzi says himself, in his preface to the new edition ; but with all deference fur him, we must confess that we do not find it so; for Zantti has treated the history of Venetian painting more as an artist than a scholar; he has mingled the masters of the Venetian provinces with those of the capital town; nay, he even makes us acquainted with the foreigners who lived and established schools at Venice. Lanzi has observed the same method in the Venetian schools, but in the Lombardic be does nothing but relate the history ot the artists in the different towns; he could thus have increased the number of schools with those of Reggio, Cento, Imola Forli. &c.
t In the Origin. Ital. La storia pittorina della Italia, &c.
or dies have a very different influence upon the arts. In the former case, it is manifested in civil, religious, military and foreign affairs, and there may be drawn a distinct line separating the eras; but the death of an artist, however renowned and excellent he may be, does, by no means, cause an immediate revolution in the art, for he leaves behind him, not only works for imitation, but pupils who have caught the spirit and character of his style.
There are also some defects in chronologicul arrangement. If an artist studied under many masters, as was often the case, he ought to be classed with him whose characteristics of style and manner he principally adopted. The connexion and mutual co-operation of the schools ought also to be shown, since we well know, how ambiguous, and little precise the term "school" is.
A.RT. VI.—I. Popular Lectures on t/ie Steam-Engine. By the Rev. Dionysius Lardner, L.L. D. Professor of Natural Philosophy and Astronomy, in the University of London, F. R. S. &c.; with Additions; By James Renwick, Professor of Natural experimental Philosophy and Chemistry, in Columbia College, New-York. Illustrated with Engravings. New York. Small 8vo. 1828.
2. Treatise on the Steam-Engine. By James Renwick, L.L.D. Professor of Natural experimental Philosophy and Chemistry, in Columbia College, New-York. 8vo. 1830.
3. Report to the Directors of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, on the comparative merits of Locomotive and Fixed Engines, as a moving power. By James Walker, Civil Engineer.
Observations on the comparative merits of Locomotive and Fixed Engines, as applied to Railways. By Robert StePhenson and Joseph Locke, Civil Engineers.
An Account of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway. By Henry Booth, Treasurer of the Company. 1vol. 8vo. Philadelphia. 1831.
4. The Commercial Power of Great-Britain, exhibiting a complete View of the Public Works of this Country, undvr the several heads of Streets, Roads, Canals, Aqueducts, Bridges, Coasts, and Maritime Ports. By the Baron Dupin, Member of the Institute of France, &c. Translated from the French. In 2 vols. 8vo., with a 4to Atlas of Plans, Elevations, Sec. London. 1825.
5. Reports on the Charleston and Hamburg Rail-Road. By William Howard, U. S. Civil Engineer. Charleston. 1829.
The important interests of society affected by the Steamengine, and by Rail-roads, induce us to devote to these subjects a portion of our pages.
The genius of Watt so effectually applied the mechanical properties of air and of steam, as a moving power, to engines, that he is justly entitled to the name of the inventor of the steam-engine. Into the discussion of this subject we shall, however, not enter. Whatever may have been the suggestions or the experiments of others, and however much the mind of Watt may have received its direction from them, there can be no doubt that until the engines of Bolton and Watt were actually brought into use by the genius of the latter, and the funds of the former, .. little benefit to society had been experienced from the application of steam as a moving power.
The history of the engine is certainly curious; it marks the slow progress of mind on important subjects. For, notwithstanding experiments with steam are ascribed to Hero, of Alexandria, who lived one hundred and thirty years before the Christian era; and, notwithstanding, we are informed that "as early as 1543, Blasco de Garay, a Spaniard, patronized by 'Charles V., actually exhibited in the harbour of Barcelona, a 'vessel propelled by means of a steam-engine," yet it was not until the year 1769, and six years after his invention of the improved engine, that Watt, in conjunction with Doctor Roebuck, who furnished the necessary funds, obtained his patent. But this was not the only delay he was destined to encounter.
"Dr. Roebuck suffered considerable loss by the failure of n mining speculation, in which he had engaged, and became so involved and embarassed, as to be unable to supply the funds to carry into execution the design of manufacturing engines. Watt was about to relinquish the further prosecution of his plans, when Mr. Matthew Bolton, a gentleman who had established a factory at Birmingham, a short time before, purehtsed out Dr. Roebuck's share in the patent, and, in 1773, entered into copartnership with Watt. This connexion was fortunate for both parties. Mr. Watt," says Play fair, " was studious and reserved, keeping aloof from the world; while Mr. Bolton was a man of address, delighting in society, active, aud mixing with people of all ranks, with |?reat freedom, and without ceremony. Had Mr. Watt searched all Europe, he, probably, would not have found another person so fitted to bring his invention before the public, in a manner worthy of its merit anil importance; and although of most opposite habits, it fortunately so happened, that no two men ever more cordially agreed in their intercourse with each other."
From these delays, the term of his patent was near its expiration before any benefit had accrued to the inventor. Parliament extended the term for twenty-five years, from 1775 to 1800.
"Notwithstanding the manifest superiority of these engines over the old atmospheric engines, yet such was the influence of prejudice, and the dishke of what is new, that Watt found great difficulties in getting them into general use. The comparative first cost also, probably, operated against them, for it was necessary that all the parts should be executed with great accuracy, which entailed proportiouably increased expense. In many instances, they felt themselves obliged to induce the proprietors of the old atmospheric engines to replace them by the new ones, by allowing them, in exchange, an exorbitant price for the old engines; and, in some cases, they were induced to erect engines at their own expense, upon an agreement, that they should only be paid it' the engines were found to fulfil the expectations, and brought the advantages which they promised. It appeared since, that Bolton & Watt had actually expended a sum of nearly £50,000 on these engines, before they began to receive any return. When we contemplate the immense advantages which the commercial interests of the country have gained by the improvements in the steam-engine, we cannot but look back with disgust at the influence of that fatal prejudice which opposes the progress of improvement, under the pretence of resisting innovation. It would be a problem of curious calculation to determine what would have been lost to the resources of this country, if chance had not united the genius of such a man as Watt, with the spirit, enterprize and capital of such a man as Bolton! The result would reflect little credit on those who think novelty alone a sufficient reason for opposition. Lardner, pp. 79, 80.
The compensation Watt received for the use of his patent, was one third of the saving of coal effected by his engine, compared with the atmospheric engines which it superseded. Actual experiment determined this to be governed by the number of strokes made by the engine; these were ascertained by a clock-work attached to and moved by the engine, and lock
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