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THE

NEW MONTHLY MAGAZINE.
No. 57.]
OCTOBER I, 1818.

(V01. X.

ORIGINAL COMMUNICATIONS.

ON THE PATRONAGE OF THE FINE ARTS which, without that aid, would have peIN THIS COUNTRY.

rished in embryo : while the former feel a TSE Historian who is employed in pleasure in promoting the intellectual entracing the progress of a great nation, joyments of mankind, they will be careor in detailing the particulars of any ful to avoid laying any restraint upon distinguished reign, never fails to direct powers, which to be useful, must possess his attention to the state of literature the entire liberty of expatiating upon and the arts, as forming the most deci- subjects best fitted to their genius ;sive proofs of superior genius and taste, and the latter being thus free to pursue liberality and magnificence. Various that course which nature prescribes, will circumstances may contribute to raise indulge no other inclination than that communities, as well as individuals into of enlarging the sphere of knowledge, notice, giving them for a time a proud and of extending the glory of their proelevation over their contemporaries, fession for the general good. It is howbut it is only science, and the pursuits ever to be regretted that patronage has which tend to improve the mind, by been too often lavished upon designs increasing the means of knowledge, that of limited or equivocal utility, and in encan be truly said to raise any people couraging the application of talents to to that height of glory, which ensures unworthy objects. But on the other the admiration of the existing age, and hand, again, though a false taste and the gratitude of posterity. Vanity and capricious fashion may have too fresuperstition, have indeed, in many in- quently proved the means of imposing stances, given a strong impulse to the ta- upon the public, and of misdirecting lents of men, and rendered them subser- genius, it is no less to be resented, that vient to purposes far beneath their na- persons of the first attainments should, tive dignity, and relative importance. through mercenary cupidity, have slackBut even in these cases, in which the ob- ened in their exertions for farther imjects have been despised, the perform- provement, from the desire to turn the ances, by their intrinsic merit, have se- distinction they have already gained to cured a permanency of reputation, and the most lucrative account; so that immortalized the artist when the patron · what ought to have stimulated them in has been forgotten. The reason of this the career of professional glory, has sunk is obvious; for though the deeds of them to practices alike degrading to their men may be illustrated by the pen of own character, and injurious to the arts the writer and ingenuity of the painter, which they profess. neither the powers of the one, nor the That the latter performances of able imagination of the other, can alter those men should fail to charm equally with principles by which the true value of all those which gave the most faitering actions is to be estimated.

promise of unrivalled excellence, has Literature and the arts will always re- been matter of common complaint at quire public encouragement; but this, to different periods ; but the cause may be be effectual for anybeneficial purpose, must seen in the abuse of splendid ease and be worthy of the subjects on which the ta- the pride of reputation to the enervalents of men are employed, without any tion of the mental and moral powers. regard to personal gratification or private Patronage, therefore, seems not to be advantage : much less should patronage always so well calculated for the invigobe thrown away with an imprudent ge- ration of the mind, and the advancenerosity upon crude undertakings, which ment of science as many are apt to imaare always an impediment to works of gine, since experience shews, that utility, and an incalculable injury to the where the stream of public or royal progress of learning. There must be bounty flows most copiously, industry a similarity of sentiment in those who abates, instead of being quickened; and encourage the laborious efforts of the he that sat out with an earnest desire mind, and those who are enabled by the of perfection, stops short, and becomes aid of others to carry into effect designs indifferent to that which was once his NEW MONTHLY MAG.No. 57.

Vol. X.

2C

194 On the Patronage of the Fine Arts in this Country, [Oct. 1, ruling passion. Like the warrior who incitement to continued exertions for lost his strength by tasting the honey the attainment of a still greater eleva which he found in the forest, the artist, tion, and it furnishes full ground of conwhose aim at first, was solely fixed upon fidence that the Arts need no'other aid professional pre-eminence, slackens in than a general spirit of emulation among his efforts when he perceives how easy artists themselves, to raise the British it is to gain wealth, by the mere iuflu- school, if not to an unrivalled 'height, ence of a name.

yet at least to such a point as shall In this country the want of patro- command the respect of those natious nage cannot be justly alleged as haviny who have hitherto arrogated a superin any degree damped the energies of riority over the rest of the world. Withgenius, or impeded the progress of out presuming to surpass the mighty science; for here literature and the arts masters of former days, thus much may have amply shared the benefits pro- be asserted, without fear of contradiction, duced by the spirit of enterprize, under that the progress of the Arts in this the protection of a mild and liberal kingdom, during the present reign, has government. Here genius may expa- fully equalled, if not exceeded, what can tiate without fear, and exercise its fa- be said of any other country within a culties without constraint, assured that similar portion of time. While, in fact, proper assistance will not be withheld there has been a rapid decline in those from laudable efforts, and that, if merit states which were once schools to the in any instance fails of meeting with an rest of Europe ; this island has not adequate reward, the cause must be only fostered and expanded the powers sought in the pride of talent, or the ob- of foreign artists, but given birth to scurity to which it shrinks through diffi- genius of the first order, the productions dence and indolence.

of which have already acquired a classical - But the great obstruction to the ad- dignity, and will be studied with profit vancement of the Arts in this powerful by succeeding generations. ompire hath been the credulity of the Delicate and discriminating patronpublic in countenancing trifling perform- age, at the same time that it has preances, slightly conceived and hastily ex- vented partial jealousies and invidious ecuted; whence wen of acknowledged distinctions, has left men of ability to ability finding it more profitable to turn that free and laudable competition many things out of hand, than to labour which becomes the independence of geassiduously upon a few, have too gene- nius, and is the perpetual spring of rally complied with a vitiated humour, great undertakings. The manner, thereand sacrificed the interests of that which fore, in which the Arts have risen to ought to have occupied the first place their present state in this nation, is in their thoughts, to the love of gain, rather to be considered with feelings - while the rage for novelty gives them an of proud satisfaction than with any opportunity of bettering their fortune emotion of concern; since it shows, that at the expense of their judgment. This however slowly the ornamental branches indiscretion, to call it no worse, may of human science have extended among seem to confirm the rank of some us, the luxuriancy of their present consciolists, that the climate of England dition is not owing to any capricious is unfavourable to the culture of the management or forced direction, but to Arts; but if the abuse of talent be the the free spirit of a liberal people, from indication of poverty of taste, those whom works of merit have never failed countries which make the greatest boast of support. If public encouragement has of refinement, must be content to share sometimes fallen short of sangnide exwith us the censure of having perverted pectation, the fault will for the most genius to unworthy purposes. It may, part be found in the inadequacy of the however, be safely affirmed, that this attempt, the deficiency of the plan, or very evil is occasioned by that intense the insufficiency of the party by whom thirst for works of elegance, which is the it was undertaken, to carry it into effect. surest sign of a general respect for When persons indulge a separate Science, and affords a certain proof, interest from that of the Art which they that the public feeling only wants a profess to esteem; or, when instead of proper direction, to render the state of exercising the same strict justice in the imitative Arts in this Kingdom regard to their own works, which they equal to the earnest wishes of their inost are apt to indulge in the examination of ardent admirers. The progress which the productions of others; when, taking has been already made, is a sufficient an undue advantage of public liberality,

1818.] Anecdotes of Eminent Persons-Mr. Edgeworth." 195 they presume to think that meaner per. It is true the moral effect of Elie Arts formances may pass, because few com has not been quite so much attended to paratively are enabled to judge them as the subject deserves; but to this at properly; and when, as the most dis- least Britain may safely lay claim, that graceful source of speculative projects, here the Arts have not suffered the an inferior genius, accing in conjunction impure degradation which has too often with a sordid spirit, obtrudes upon disgraced them in other countries. national credulity works of little value, there will be more reason to condemn the profuseness of generosity than to

ANECDOTES OP EMINENT PERSONS. complain of the want of it.

No. I. But in truth, it would be no difficult [As a number of curious facts relative matter to prove from the history of to distinguished personages must have knowledge, since its great revival in come to the knowledge of several of our the sixteenth century, that this country readers, we beg to remind our friends has rather exceeded, than fallen short that we shall be happy to receive, for this in the extension of patronage.

department of our magazine, all those whose At two memorable and turbulent

authority can be vouched for.] periods of our annals, the Arts expe

MR. EDGEWORTH. rienced royal favour under circumstances

IT is understood that the late Mr. that might seem most unpropitious to Edgeworth left a manuscript behind him their progress; for at the commence- containing memoirs of his life, which ment of the Reformation, and amidst his amiable and celebrated daughter, the strife of polemics, Hans Holbein Miss Edgeworth, is now preparing for lived splendidly in the English court; the press. We doubt whether such a and the same haughty monarch by whom document, and so produced, would be he was entertained, used his utmost likely to contain those excentric traits efforts to allure the illustrious Raffaelle of character which are peculiar to all into his kingdum. At a subsequent individuals, but more particularly so to era, when a furious fanaticism' had Mr. Edgeworth. A few anecdotes, gendered an insatiable rage for innova- therefore, derived from the most retion, the unhappy Charles consoled him- spectable authority, may not be displeasself, under the vexations which he suf- ing to our readers. fered from the republican party, in the

Many persons, not intimately acworks and conversation of Rubens and quainted with this gentleman, 'have Vandyke. And in the eventsulaye towhich imagined him a free-thinker in the most it has been our lot to belong, though the unqualified sense of the word; and have world has trembled froin one hemisphere cven gone so far as to assert that he the most tremendous revolutions, the future state. What' his earlier tenets progress of learning, and the Arts con- may have been we know not; but, untinued here in one steady and even doubtedly, a few years before his death splendid course. Discoveries of the he declared himself quite of a contrary greatest value have emanated from our opinion, and held tha the world would scientific institutions; while all de- again be peopled with its former inhascriptions of persons, without any other bitants, who were to repossess their own object than that of promoting the general proper bodies, purified from earthly welfare, have concurred in furthering feelings; and live herc in a state not designs calculated to invigorate mental liable to decay or death. energy and moral improvement. This Mr. Edgeworth was chiefly remarkis true patronage, and it may be men- able for an ingenious, rather than a solid tioned without vanity, as the peculiar turn of mind; for desultory aud various, glory of our land, that no concern has rather than systematic and profound been deemed worthy of national support information. His argumentative faculty which did not appear to have a universal was deficient; and when you expected tendency, or to be productive of benefit to be answered with logic, you were reto the whole human race. The liberal butted with an anecdote.

Arts have been considered in their most He had a sort of biographical history .chonourable light, as connected with of himself, which he seldon failed to give

manners; and being thus regarded every new acquaintance at the first inthey have acquired a distinction which troduction. It ran thus, “ Now, Sir, entitles them to the particnlar attention you know the great Mr. Edgeworth, of the philanthropist and philosopher, and you may possibly wish to know

MISS BDGEWORTH.

196 Anecdotes of Eminent Persons --Miss Edgeworth. [Oct. 1, something of his birth, pårentage, and for what purpose have I those galloshes education. I shall, first, give you my at the fire ?", To air," answered the reasons for being an Englishman, and lady. “ But why to air,"; asked he ?? then for being an Irishman, and I shall “For the purpose of woaring them," leave you your choice to call me which she replied. « But for what purpose to you please. I was born in England, I wear them t"-" In order to visit that married two English wives, I have gentleman." There, Sir,! cried he, several children who were born in ever while you live call witnesses to England ; and I have a small property your conduct, instead of speaking on it in England. Now my reasons for being yourself.": Had I told you, why these an Irishman. I married three Irish galloshes are at the fire, you might not wives, I have a large estate in Ire- have believed me. By the way, I land, -I have a number of Irish wonder what is the derivation of the children--my progenitors were Irish, word galloshes ?" The visitor seeing and I have lived most of my life in him so well inclined to sportiveness was Ireland. Sir, I am a man who despise willing to humour him, and said, "the volgar prejudice, for two of my wives word was probably derived from some are alive,* and two, who are dead, were one's having exclaimed as he was kicking sisters."

them off after a walk, go, loose shoes." Mr. Mr. Edgeworth was nearly related to Edgeworth thought they might be "gala the Abbé Edgeworth, that venerable shoes," in King James's time, when the Priest who attended Louis XVI. to the most extraordinary shoes were worn. scaffold, and he was actually arrested in In short, after a variety of Swiftian Paris, by Fouche, as a suspected cha- derivations, the dictionary was produced, racter, in consequence of his affinity; and gallosha proved to be a Spanish though Mr. Edgeworth inclines to think word. it was on account of his having pursued a light-ancled nymph one evening home It is a rule with Miss Edgeworth to to her hotel, who proved to be under the write, without allowing pleasure or inaugust protection of the great police dolence to interrupt her, six pages a day; minister.

no wonder therefore her works are so Mr. E., we believc, was the first who voluminous, or rather it would be surintroduced the telegraph into this prising they are not more so, were it not country; at least, while in France, he that when her book is finished, she improved its construction infinitely ; so exerts a severe and remorseless judgmuch so indeed, that he considered him. inent in pruning its redundancies. Yet self the original inventor of it. He cer we do not think she has always effected tainly had a great mechanical turn, and this difficult task happily. “ Patronage," his house at Edgeworth's Town was and a few of her other novels might be quite a curiosity ; for, from the kitchen considerably reduced in weight, without to'the garret, wherever machinery could suffering any diminution of value. She supply the place of hands, it was sure to has always too, a tablet at hand, ready be found.

to note down any expression occurring Several works published in Miss Edge- in conversation, which she might imagine worth's name, were partly written by likely to assist her literary labours. We himself; but so far as we were able to cannot help thinking this an injudicious ascertain, his contributions, did not form practice ; since many, who in the "feast the most valuable portion. Indeed we of reason and the flow of soul" might have always considered his daughter, utter happy apothegms, and give loose to both a more masculine and more pro a luxuriant imagination, would feel a found writer than himself.

disagreeable restraint, and repress their As a specimen of the eccentricity of his powers, fearful of saying something not manners, we shall record a conversation sufficiently fine for the press: or else which took place on his first introduction in attempting to talk too well, degenerate to the gentleman from whom we heard into pedantry, and affectation. Miss the anecdote. This person having called Edgeworth, however, is far from being to visit the great man, and names being pedantic or affected herself. On the announced by a third party, Mr. Edge- contrary, if fault must be found with worth instantly turned round to a lady her deportment and conversation, we who was present, and said, "My dear, would say, that both bear an appearance

of simplicity, and even triviality; which * Mr. E. was divorced by his guardian savours too much of an artificial enfrom his first wife whilst he was a minor. deavour at avoiding the author. Nothing

« and

1818.1
Original Letter of Bishop Warburton. **

197 however can possibly be more amiable him to return the compliment. Why, than her manners, and nothing more in consequence of your Lordship's exdelightful than her conversation, as she treme quickness and discernment,” said conreys information without appearing Carran, “ in perceiving what we ławyers to instruct, and possesses the happy are about to state, you are apt to infaculty of pleasing others by eliciting terrupt our pleadings, and conclude our from them those observations, and those arguments for us. It sometimes haptalents, which by the assistance of her pens, however, that you do not draw tablets she knows 80 well how to apply. those deductions for us, which we should · Her conversational wit is not brilliant, have drawn ourselves." His Lordship but it is playful and engaging. One of rebutted this assertion, and averred that the best sallies which we have heard he never attempted such an interruprecorded of her, was on her pressing a tion, till he understood plainly the drift young and diffident lady to sing. “Well,” of their reasoning, and then he stated it said the latter at last, “ I will sing, on himself in order to save the time of the condition that you first pay me a com- court., Curran dropped the subject, and pliment,-one that the company shall turned to a friend who sat near him. decide to be witty.” “Surely," said “A most dreadful circumstance occurred Miss E., “you are not so deiermined the other day," said he,“ I had a pig that against singing, as to make my being I wished to make bacon of, so sent for witty a previous stipulation ? ---surely the butcher : he came and brought with you will surrender without that article?" him a inost beautiful little boy, his son. ** No,", rejoined the lady, I am The pig was laid down in the yard : the positive." “ That is impossible," ob- butcher lifted his axe for the blow, the served Miss E., “for we all know that poor little boy ran forward,"-" 'good you are superlative !"

God!" exclaimed Lord Clare,
CURRAN.

he killed his son !" “ No my Lord," With the single exception of Sheridan, answered Curran drily," he killed the perhaps, no man of modern times said pig !" $0 many witty things a3 Curran. A great number of these have already ORIGINAL LETTER OF found their way to the press; but those we now offer, if we mistake not, have DEARE SIR, hitherto been reserved, virum volitare I have the favour of your's without per oru! The following is rather an date. I have not seen the pamphlet instance of his ready eloquence than his you mention written against my Juwit. At the assizes of Cork, Curran LIAN, nor shall I ever read a line of had just entered upon his case, and it. Every clergyman, not to say every given the jury a statement of facts. He heliever, is equally concerned with me then; with his usual impressiveness and about the truth of that miracle. It is pathos, appealed to their feelings, and the common cause in which I have perwas concluding the whole with this sen- formed my share. Besides I have been tence, “ Thus gentlemen, I trust I have long in a humour to abjure all contromade the innocence of that persecuted versy. Whatever I shall write here- man as clear to you as"--At that instant after will be delivered freely, explained the sun, which had hitherto been over- as clearly, and enforced as strongly as I clouded, shot its rays into the Court- am able. If any one can overthrow it, house ; –“ as clear to you,” continued he hath my leave: and if any one will he," as yonder sun-beam, which now support it, he hath my thanks; but to bursts in amongst us, and supplies me trouble myselfe further about the matter, with its splendid illustration !" This is more, I think than I owe to the pubeffusion, we ourselves heard, and its lic; is more, I am sure, than I owe local aptness, together with the happiness either to truth or myselfe. of the language in which it was clothed, AMELIA, in my opinion, is neither equal produced an effect which has seldom heen to Tom Jones, nor to Jos. ANDREWS ; equalled; and can scarcely be conceived but is much better than any, thing, by those who were not present. in this sort of writing, from any other

One evening, after dinner, the bar of our countrymen. risters in circuit, were criticising each The Essay on Spirit is written by other's style of eloquence. Lord Clare, Clayton, Bishop of Clogher. * In an who was then a judge, made some remarke on Curran, to whom he bore no * It was the production of a young clerquod silt, and afterwards requested gyman in Ireland, who was afraid to publish

BISHOP WARBURTON.

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