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guess why I do not keep a coach, found fault with the moral of the and you are surprised. Now, sir, if Beggar's Opera. I endeavoured to you did know, you would not be sur defend a work which had afforded prised.” I said, tenderly, “ I hope, me so much pleasure, but could not iny dear sir, you will let me know master that strength of mind with before I leave town.” Pozz. “ Yes, which he argued ; and it was with sir, you shall know now. You shall great satisfaction that he communipot go to Mr. Winkins and to Mr. cated to me afterwards a method Jenkins, and to Mr. Stubbs, and say, of curing corns by applying a piece why does not Pozz keep a coach? of oiled silk. In the early history of I will tell you myself: sir, I can't the world he preferred sir Isaac afford it."
Newton's Chronology; but as they We talked of drinking. I asked gave employment to useful artisans, him whether, in the course of bis he did not dislike the large buckles long and valuable life, he had not then coming into use. known some men who drank more Next day we dined at the Mitre. than they could bear? Pozz. “Yes, I mentioned spirits. Pozz. “ Sir, sir; and then, sir, nobody could bear there is as much evidence for the them. A man who is drunk, sir, is existence of spirits as against it. a very foolish fellow.” Bozz. “ But, You may not believe it, but you sir, as the poet says, ' he is devoid cannot deny it.” I told him that my of all care." Pozz. “ Yes, sir, he great-grand-mother once saw a cares for nobody; he has none of the spirit. He asked me to relate it, cares of life; he cannot be a mer. which I did very minutely, while chant, sir, for he cannot write he listened with profound attention. his name; he cannot be a poli- When I mentioned that the spirit tician, sir, for he cannot talk; he once appeared in the shape of a cannot be an artist, sir, for he can- shoulder of mutton, and another not see; and yet, sir, there is science time in that of a tea-pot, he interin drinking." Bozz. “ I suppose you rupted me : Pozz. “ There, sir, is mean that a man ought to know the point; the evidence is good, what he drinks.” Pozm. “ No, sir, but the scheme is defective in conto know what one drinks is nothing; sistency. We cannot deny that the but the science consists of three parts. spirit appeared in these shapes; Now, sir, were I to drink wine, I but then we cannot reconcile them. should wish to know them all; I What has a tea-pot to do with a should wish to know when I had too shoulder of mutton ? Neither is it little, when I had enough, and when a terrific object. There is nothing I had too much. There is our friend contemporaneous. Sir, these are *****, (mentioning a gentleman of objects which are not seen at the our acquaintance) he knows when same time, nor in the same place.” he has too little, and when he has Bozz. “ I think, sir, that old wotoo much, but he knows not when he men in general are used to see has enough. Now, sir, that is the ghosts." Pozz. “ Yes, sir, and science of drinking, to know when their conversation is full of the subone has enough.”
ject; I would have an old woman to We talked this day on a variety record such conversations; their of topics, but I find very few me. loquacity tends to minuteness.” morandums in my journal. On We talked of a person who had small beer, he said it was flatulent a very bad character. Pozz. “ Sir, liquor. He disapproved of those he is a scoundrel.” Bozz. “ I hate who deny the utility of absolute pow. a scoundrel.” Pozz. “ There you er; and seemed to be offended with are wrong ; don't hate scoundrels. a friend of our's, who would always Scoundrels, sir, are useful; there have his eggs poached. Sign-posts, are many things we cannot do withhe observed, had degenerated within out scoundrels. I would not chuse his memory ; and he particularly to keep company with scoundrels,
but something may be got from their several meanings. It will not, them." Bozz.“ Are not scoundrels perhaps, be useless or unseasonable generally fools ?” Pozz. “ No, sir, to give a short explanation of these they are not. A scoundrel must terms, in a manner as plain and inbe a clever fellow ; he must know telligible as possible. many things of which a fool is igno There are three kinds of prints, rant. Any man may be a fool. I engravings, etchings, and mezzothink a good book might be made tintos. The characteristic of the out of scoundrels. I would have a first is strength; of the second, Biographia Flagitiosa, the lives of freedom ; and of the third, sofiness. eminent scoundrels, from the earli. All these, however, may in some est accounts to the present day.” I degree be found in each. mentioned hanging; I thought it a From the shape of the engraver's very aukward situation. Pozz. tool, each stroke is an angular in“ No, sir, hanging is not an auk- cision ; which must of course, if it ward situation ; it is proper, sir, be not very light, give the line that a man whose actions tend to strength and firinness. From such wards flagitious obliquity, should ap- a line also, being a deliberate one, pear perpendicular at last.”. I told correctness may be expected ; but him that I had lately been in com 10 great freedom : for it is a lapany with some gentlemen, every boured line, ploughed through the one of whom could recollect some metal; and must necessarily, in friend or other who had been hang- some degree, want ease. ed. Pozz. “ Yes, sir, that is the Unlimited freedom, on the other easiest way. We know those who hand, is the characteristic of etche have been hanged; we can recollect ing: The needle, gliding along the that; but we cannot number those surface of the copper, meets no rewho deserve it; it would not be de. sistance ; and easily takes any turn corous, sir, in a mixed company. the hand pleases to give it. EtchNo, sir, that is one of the few things ing indeed is mere drawing, and which we are compelled to think.” may be practised with the same fa
cility. But as aqua-fortis bites in an equable manner, it cannot give
the lines that strength which they For the Literary Magazine. receive from a pointed graver cut
ting the copper. Besides, it is difficult to prevent its biting the plate all over alike. The distant parts
indeed may easily be covered with MUCH as every body is convers wax, or varnish, and the general ant with prints; familarly and unic effect of the keeping preserved ; versally as they are employed for but to give each smaller part its adorning our apartments or our proper relief, and to harmonize the books; abounding as they do in whole, requires so many different every kind of habitation, from the degrees of strength, such easy palace to the alehouse, from the transitions from one to another, that city-hall to the remotest hovel in the aqua-fortis alone is not equal to it. wilderness, there are very few who Here, therefore, engraving, which knew more of the manner in which by a stroke, deep or tender, at the they are made than merely that the artist's pleasure, can vary strength principal material is copper. This and faintness in any degree, has the information, too, we chiefly owe to advantage. the term conperplate.
Engraving, therefore, and etchIn reading, too, we are familiar ing having their respective advanwith the different terms, engraving, tages and deficiencies, artists have mezzotinto, etching, and aquatinta, endeavoured to unite their powers, but are generally quite ignorant of and to correct the faults of each, by
ON THE DIFFERENT
joining the freedom of the one, with few strong touches; and here and. the strength of the other. In many there a few harmonizing strokes will modern prints, the plate is first add to the effect : but if the engrav. etched, and afterwards strength- er venture much further, he has ened, and finished by the graver. good luck if he do no mischief. This, when well done, has a happy An engraved plate, unless it be effect. The flatness, which is the cut very slightly, will cast off seven consequence of an equable strength or eight hundred good impressions ; of shade, is taken off; and the print yet this depends, in some degree, on gains new force by the relief given the hardness of the copper. An etchto those parts which hang, in the ed plate will not give above two painter's language, on the parts be- hundred; unless it be eaten very hind them. But great art is neces- deep, and then it may perhaps give sary in this business. Many a print, three hundred. After that, the plate which wanted only a few touches, re. must be retouched, or the impresceives afterwards so many, as to be sions will be faint. come laboured, heavy, and disgusting. An excellent mode of etching on
In etching, we have the greatest a soft ground has been lately variety of excellent prints. It is so brought into use, and approaches much like drawing, that we have still nearer to drawing than the the very works themselves of the common mode. On a thin paper, most celebrated masters: many of somewhat larger than the plate, you whom have left behind them prints trace a correct outline of the drawof this kind ; which, however slighting you intend to etch. You then and incorrect, will always have fold the paper, thus traced, over the something masterly, and of course plate ; and laying the original drawbeautiful in them.
ing before you, finish the outline on In the muscleing of human figures, the traced one with a black lead penof any considerable size, engraving cil. Every stroke of the pencil on one has undoubtedly the advantage of side licks up the soft ground on the etching The soft and delicate other. So that when you finish your transitions from light to shade, which drawing with black-lead, and take are there required, cannot be so well the paper off the plate, you find a expressed by the needle ; and, in complete and very beautiful drawgeneral, large prints require a ing on the reverse of the paper, and strength which etching cannot give, the etching likewise as complete on and are therefore fit subjects for the copper. You then proceed to engraving
bite it with aqua-fortis, in the comEiching, on the other land, is mon mode of etching : only as your
particularly adapted to ground is softer, the aqua-fortis must sketches, and slight designs : which, be weaker. if executed by the graver, would en
Besides these methods of engraytirely lose their freedom; and with ing on copper, we have prints enit their beauty. Landscape too, in graren on pewter and on wood. general, requires etching. The The pewter plate gives a coarsefoliage of trees, ruins, sky, and ness and dirtiness to the print which indeed every part of landscape, is often disagreeable. But engravrequires the utmost freedom. In ing on wood is capable of great finishing an etched landscape, with beauty. the tool, as it is called, too much care Mezzotinto is very different from cannot be taken to prevent heavi- either engraving or etching. In
In general there is great ni- these you cut out the shades on a cety of touching on an etched plate; smooth plate. In mezzotinto the but in landscape the business is pe- plate is covered with a rough ground, culiarly delicate. The foregrounds, and you scrape the lights. The and the boles of such trees as are plate would otherwise give an implaced upon them, may require a pression entirely black.
Since the time of its invențion by drawing, and an awkwardness, in prince Rupert, as is commonly sup- the extremities especially. Some posed, the art of scraping mezzo. inferior artists have endeavoured to lintos is much more improved than remedy this, by terminating their either of its sister arts. Some of figures with an engraved or etched the earliest etchings are perhaps line ; but the experiment has failed. the best ; and engraving, since the The strength of the line, and the times of Goltzius and Muller, has softness of the ground, accord ill to. not, perhaps, made any great ad- gether. I speak not here of that judivances. But mezzotinto, compared cious mixture of etching and mezzowith its original state, is now almost tinto, formerly used by White ; and a new art. Some of the modern which the best mezzotinto scrapers pieces of workmanship by the best at present use, to give a strength to mezzotinto scrapers as much exceed particular parts; I speak only of a the works of White and Smith, as harsh and injudicious lineal terminathose masters did Becket and Si. tion. mons. They have, we must own, Mezzotinto excels each of the better originals to copy. Kneller's other species of prints, in its capaciportraits are very paltry, compared ty of receiving the most beautiful ef. with those of modern artists, and fects of light and shade: as it can are scarce susceptible of any effects the most happily unite them, by of light and shade. As to prince blending them insensibly together. Rupert’s works, those that pass for Of this Rembrandt seems to have his are executed in the same black, been aware. He had probably seen harsh, disagreeable manner, which some of the first mezzotintos; and appears so strong in the masters admiring the effect, endeavoured to who succeeded him. The invention, produce it in etching, by a variety of however, was noble; and the early intersecting scratches. masters have the credit of it: but We cannot get more than a hunthe truth is, the ingenious mechanic dred good impressions from a mezhas been called to the painter's aid, zotinto plate. The rubbing of the and has invented a manner of laye hand soon wears it smooth : and yet ing ground, wholly unknown to the by constantly repairing it, it may earlier masters; and in mezzotinto give four or five hundred, with the ground is a capital considera- tolerable strength. The first imtion.
pressions are not always the best. The characteristic of mezzotinto They are too black and harsh. The is softness, which adapts it chiefly to best is from the fortieth to the sixtiportrait, or history, with a few eth. The harsh edges will then be figures, and these not too small. No- softened down, and yet there will be thing, except paint, can more spirit and strength enough left. naturally express flesh, or the The dry needle, as it is called, is a flowing of hair or the folds of manner between etching and engravdrapery, or the catching lights of ing. It is performed by cutting the armour. In engraving and etching copper with a steel point, held like a our prejudices must contend with pencil; and differs from etching only cross lines, which exist on no natu in the force with which you work. ral bodies: but mezzotinto gives This method is used by all engraus the strongest representation of vers in their skies, and other tender the real surface. If, however, the parts; and some of them extend figures are to be crowded, it wants it still further. strength to detach the several parts Within fifteen or twenty years, a with a proper relief, and if they are new mode of etching has come very small, it wants precision, which much into use, called aquatinta. can only be given by an outline ; or, It is so far similar to the common as in painting, by a different tint. mode of etching, that the shadows In minature works also, the uneven are bitten into copper by aqua-forness of the ground will occasion bad tis, from which the lights are de
fended by a prepared granulated For; the Literary Magazine ground. Through the minute interstices of this ground the aqua- PRESENT STATE OF FINE ARTS fortis is admitted, and forms a kind IN ENGLAND, AT THE CLOSE of wash. In the composition of this OF 1805. granulation, the great secret of the art consists; and different artists MESSRS. Boydell's Shakespeare, have their different inodes of pre- Bowyer's History, Macklin's Poets, paring their ground. Some also and some other great works, being strengthen the aquatinta wash by completed without any similar estathe use of the needle, as in common blishments in their room, and the conetching, which, in landscape espe- vulsions of Europe having afforded cially, has a good effect. The secret so many facilities to such as pur. of the art, however, does not en- chase ancient and foreign pictures in tirely consist in preparing and lay- preference to those of living artists, ing on the ground. Much experi- presents but a dreary prospect to ence is necessary in the manage the English professors of either ment of it.
painting or engraving. Though it The great advantage of this mode must be admitted, that in some inof etching is, that it comes nearer stances home-made productions to drawing than any other species were not worthy of the subjects seof working on copper: the shades lected from the poet, or the prices are thrown in by a wash, as if with paid by the employer, yet it must a brush. It is also, when perfectly also be admitted, that among a few understood, favourable to dispatch. genuine specimens of fine art, which In general, indeed, it seems better have been consigned from abroad, adapted to a rough sketch than a there have been many inferior and finished work; yet in skilful hands, damaged pictures, and many fabri. when aided by the needle or graver, cated copies, smoked into antiquity, it may be carried to a great height and sold at treble the prices, for of elegant finishing
which superior pictures from EngOn the other hand, the great glish painters miglit hare been purdisadvantage of this mode of etching chased. arises from the difficulty of making To counteract these alarming cir. the shades graduate softly into the cumstances, the British Institution, lights. When the artist has made now established at what was lately too harsh an edge, and wishes to the Shakespeare Gallery, in Pallburnish it off, there is often a mid- mall, embraces a number of objects dle tint below it; in burnishing off that promise essential benefit to the the one, he disturbs the other; and English school. instead of leaving a soft graduating The plan is as follows. edge, he introduces in its room an 1. The object of the establishment edging of light.
is to facilitate by a public exhibition Aquatinta was first introduced in- the sale of the productions of British to England, though but little known, artists, to encourage the talents of about forty or fifty years ago, by a young artists, by premiums, and by Frenchman of the name of La ihe anunal application of such funds Prince. It has since been improv- as may be obtained for that purpose ; ed by several artists. Savby used to endeavour to form a great and it very happily in several of his public gallery of the works of British prints; Jukes, also, and Malton artists, together with a few select have done some good things in this specimens of the great schools. way; but Alken carried it to the 2. The exhibition and the gallery righest degree of perfection, and to be exclusively confined to the had some secret in preparing and productions of artists of, or resident managing his ground, which gives in the united kingdom. his prints a very superior effect. 3. Historical pictures and land