Skip to main content

Full text of "The Century Guild hobby horse"

See other formats


? 



[JANUARY, 1887 


PRICE TWO SHILLINGS AND SIXPENCE 


CENTURX 

GUILD 


LONDON. 

KEGAN PAUL.TRENCH AND CO; 
I,PATERNOSTER SQUARE. 

































































“THE CENTURY GUILD HOBBY HORSE.” 


The aim of the Century Guild is to render all branches of Art the 
sphere, no longer of the tradesman, but of the artist. It would restore 
building, decoration, glass-painting, pottery, wood-carving, and metal¬ 
work to their rightful place beside painting and sculpture. By so 
placing them they would be once more regarded as legitimate and 
honourable expressions of the artistic spirit, and would stand in their 
true relation not only to sculpture and painting but to the drama, to 
music, and to literature. 

In other words, the Century Guild seeks to emphasize the Unity 
of Art; and by thus dignifying Art in all its forms, it hopes to make it 
living, a thing of our own century, and of the people. 

In the Hobby Horse, the Guild will provide a means of expression 
for these aims, and for other serious thoughts about Art. 

The matter of the Hobby Horse will deal, chiefly, with the 
practical application of Art to life; but it will also contain illustrations 
and poems, as well as literary and biographical essays. 

All communications to be addressed to the Editor, care of 
KEGAN PAUL, TRENCH AND CO. 

PUBLISHED QUARTERLY. 

To be had of all Booksellers . 


CONTENTS OF NO. V. 

Frontispiece: The Angel of Death crowning Innocence. 

G. F. Watts, R.A. 

A Christmas Carol. Christina G. Rossetti . . . . 

On the Unity of Art. Selwyn Image 

Poem : “ Like the Days of an Hireling.” Herbert P. Horne 
The Rose of the Infanta, of Victor Hugo, done into English 
Prose. Anne Gilchrist. Illustrated by a Photo¬ 
gravure from a painting by Herbert H. Gilchrist . 
A Christmas Carol. . Selwyn Image ...... 

The Italian Renaissance. Arthur Galton. 

The Life Mask of William Blake. Herbert P. Horne. Illus¬ 
trated by a Photogravure, by the kind permission of 
Mr. George Richmond, R.A. . 

Notes on the National Gallery ( continued ). Arthur H. 

Mackmurdo:— 

Orcagna 

• • • • • . . . 

Verses suggested by some Lines of Ovid .... 

An Appeal ....... 

1 he Memorial to the Men of Letters of the Lake District 


PAGE 


IO 
18 
20 


29 


31 
37 
39 
41 



Vault Collection 



«H7 l Tom Perry Special Collections 
HO. 5 Harold B. Lee Library 
1887 Brigham Young University 


January 


BRIGHAM YOUNG UNIVERSITY 




97 23494 0028 


















































* 

H 





* .4 








* 






Digitized by the Internet Archive 
in 2019 with funding from 
Brigham Young University 



https://archive.org/details/centuryguildhobb51887lond 



A CHRISTMAS CAROL. 

Whoso hears a chiming for Christmas at the nighest, 

Hears a sound like Angels chanting in their glee, 
Hears a sound like palm boughs waving in the highest, 
Hears a sound like ripple of a crystal sea. 

Sweeter than a prayer-bell for a saint in dying, 

Sweeter than a death-bell for a saint at rest, 

Music struck in Heaven with earth’s faint replying 

“ Life is good, and death is good, for Christ is Best.” 

Christina G. Rossetti. 


b 


ON THE UNITY OF ART. 


HE Century Guild Hobby Horse ” has now been in 
existence for just a year. One reflects that in these 
hard days, and amidst the struggle of innumerable 
magazines to win or keep their favour with us, this is 
something upon which the editors may be genuinely congratulated, and 
exhorted to see that they lose not the gods’ goodwill through any 
failure in returning humble thanks. At least I will here venture 
on this congratulatory exhortation : especially as they do me the 
compliment of asking me for a short note in this New Year number 
of theirs,—a short note on that particular principle, which all along 
they have had such urgent concern over, the Unity of Art. 

In a moment or two I will explain what it is that this expression 
means. But I may remark to start with, that nobody, who has ever 
been brought even slightly into connection with the Century Guild, 
but must have heard it not once nor twice. Scarcely should I be 
exaggerating if I said, that it was to preach this principle and to carry 
it out in practice, that the Century Guild and the “ Century Guild 
Hobby Horse ” were brought into existence. Whenever my fortu¬ 
nate steps lead me to that charming room in Southampton Street, 
Strand, where the Guild is centrally established, I seem to see written 
over the entrance this short confession, Credo in unam Artem, multi- 
partitcim , indivisibilem. Not indeed, I am sure, that the members of 
the Guild would wish me to claim for them the invention of a new 









ON THE UNITY OF ART. 


3 


principle : for anything so absurd as that they are far too modest and 
too truthful : but as one who owes them many an obligation, and who 
yet is not formally of their number, I can say plainly, that this 
principle of theirs they began to preach and work upon four years 
ago : and four years ago,—(it is a fairly long time in these quickly 
shifting days)—people were not as familiar as they are just now with 
the principle: though even now to what multitudes is it still 
unfamiliar! 

But my note cannot be a long one : and I am writing it not to 
flatter the Century Guild, but to explain, as simply as I can, what it 
is they mean by the Unity of Art : so with this little preliminary 
flourish of praise, which really I have been unable to resist at this 
season of congratulations, I say no more about them, and pass on to 
the matter in hand. 

I am not posing as a prophet when I say, how likely it is that 
before very long this principle of the Unity of Art will be one upon 
which many of us will have to make up our minds for practical issues. 
Before we are brought into judgment it is well to recollect ourselves. 
To have a question suddenly sprung on you, to have the question of 
a deep and wide-reaching principle—especially in a matter so delicate 
as Art—suddenly sprung on you, is extremely confusing. Few of us 
are of such heroic make that we can be equal to the call, and see 
quite round the matter and into the heart of it, and pass a secure 
judgment all at the moment. We say this, or we say that; we act 
this way, or we act that way ; but by-and-bye there comes quiet, and 
with quiet comes reflection, and with reflection a deplorable sense 
that we have spoken and acted wrongly. Repentance is fortunately 
possible in many cases: that brilliant moralist “The Pall Mall Gazette” 
told us a few days ago, that it is better to climb down your tree even 


4 


ON THE UNITY OF ART 


amid humiliating publicity, than to stay up it : but it is better still, if 
there is no tree up which you find yourself. And very often a little 
thought, while things are only in the air, will save us. 

Now, when in this paper we are talking about Art, let it be 
understood that, though we are going to use Art with a meaning 
which embraces more things than popularly it has the credit for 
embracing, we are not going to use it with a meaning which embraces 
all that it might. Music is Art, Acting is Art, Dancing is Art, 
Literature is Art: all these things are Art in the proper sense; and 
all these act and react one on the other intimately : Credo m unam 
Artem , multipartitam , indivisibilem. But we are not going to talk 
about Literature, or Dancing, or Acting, or Music just now, because 
the conditions we are under lay some limits on us. Credo in unam 
Artem indivisibilem ,—yes: but also multipartitam : and the par¬ 
ticular aspect of Art, to which our conditions limit us, is the aspect in 
which it has only to do with the pictorial and plastic representation 
of things. 

With this limitation then, which yet leaves us, heaven knows! 
space enough to range over and lose ourselves in, what is it that we 
mean, when we talk about the Unity of Art ? 

Definitions are proverbially difficult things : definitions in matters 
of extreme delicacy, one may say of intangibility, such as Religion 
and Art, are extremely difficult things : nay, you may really say, that 
if in such matters you have set yourself on defining with such 
inevitable accuracy, that you will cover every spot and outlet of the 
ground, so that nobody can escape or attack you,—you have set 
yourself to something that is impossible. Language is a subtle thing : 
but thought and emotion are things subtler still, in comparison with 
which the subtlest language seems indeed clumsy. We open our 


ON THE UNITY OF ART 


5 


eyes then full on the difficulty; and knowing to start with that 
impregnable we shall never be, set ourselves to explain what we mean 
by the Unity of Art with as much distinctness as our powers, and the 
nature of the case allow us. 

For practical purposes then,—and it is with practical issues in my 
mind that I am writing,—we mean, when we talk about the Unity of 
Art, this: we mean that all kinds of invented Form, and Tone, and 
Colour are alike true and honourable aspects of Art, whatever the 
material or purpose may be which employs them. We mean, that 
the man, who is engaged in this invention, is an Artist; and that 
his work can only be dealt with properly, when it is dealt with for 
what it is, Art-work. 

If this explanation,—perhaps after all we do more safely in 
speaking of it not as a definition, but as an explanation,—if this 
explanation is a true one, and if the principle itself is a true principle, 
how many things we shall have to deal with as true and honourable 
pieces of Art, which in modern times have not been popularly so 
dealt with ! No one, for example, doubts that Raphael painting the 
Madonna di San Sisto is ipso facto an artist: but how many of us 
would feel quite secure in saying, that the unknown inventor of 
patterns to decorate a wall or a water-pot was also ipso facto an 
artist ? Do I compare him with Raphael ? If you mean, do I think 
that, so far as treating him as an artist equally with Raphael goes, he 
is to be compared ?—I certainly shall answer, yes. That the one 
employs himself in representing the human form and the highest 
human interests, while the other employs himself in representing 
abstract lines and masses, this, so far as the claim to being an artist 
goes, makes no difference. For our principle is, that all kinds of 
invented Form, and Tone, and Colour, are alike true and honourable 


6 


ON THE UNITY OF ART 


aspects of Art, whatever the material or purpose may be which 
employs them. I repeat in italics the expression, alike true and 
honourable aspects. You will observe that word alike. I do not say, 
alike true and equally honourable aspects: that is not so : but that 
they are alike true and alike honourable, this is what we believe. 

I understand that the Editors of the Hobby Horse in asking me 
to write this note, are asking me to say plainly what it is that one 
means by this principle of Unity, not to enter upon the metaphysical 
and historical grounds, which lead one to believe in it. I should not 
shrink from that task any more than I shrink from this: but it is not 
the task laid upon me at the moment; and so here at least I have 
nothing to do with it. And perhaps there are quite a number of us, 
who will find it sufficient for immediate purposes to think over what 
we mean without troubling themselves as to why we mean it. For 
when you begin to realize, that all kinds of invented Form, and 
Tone, and Colour, are alike true and honourable aspects of Art, you 
see something very much like a revolution looming ahead of you. 
For indeed this realization of the thing has not yet gone very far 
with us. The popular use of terms is an index of popular thought. 
Now the popular use of the term “artist” means, and means only, 
a picture-painter. That is to say, in the popular mind of Englishmen 
Art and the painting of pictures are exactly synonymous. I was 
hearing only a week ago of a distinguished painter, still spared to us, 
who persistently maintained that Art was oil-painting, and that oil- 
painting was Art: and when it was suggested to him that possibly 
sculpture was Art as well, he was astonished at the impertinence. 
And yet perhaps this distinguished person might have sheltered 
himself not illogically behind a distinguished body—behind the 
Royal Academy : of whom indeed I desire to say nothing irreverent; 


ON THE UNITY OF ART 


7 


but only that they very accurately represent the ordinary English¬ 
man’s view upon the matter—that Art is picture-painting. For the 
Exhibition of the Royal Academy of Arts, about which we are all 
annually so eager in asking one another whether we have been to it, 
is most properly described, when we say that it is the Exhibition of 
the Royal Academy of Oil-paintings : for though there are other 
things exhibited there, as a little Sculpture for example, and some 
Architectural drawings, these are only appendages to the main busi¬ 
ness, about which neither Academicians nor their visitors feel bound 
to much trouble themselves. One should not wish to say this with 
sarcasm, or bitterly, or to work oneself into an eloquent passion over 
it. In innumerable cases things are after all what they are, because 
it has been impossible for them to be otherwise. In innumerable 
cases therefore we do well to restrain ourselves, and to be content 
with laying a quiet finger on the thing that is wrong,—content with 
calling attention to it, and to some of its consequences, if there is 
opportunity,—but by all means without bluster. And so I would 
say, that when a man comes to believe in the Unity of Art, as I have 
been trying to explain it, he will no doubt be surprised, when he is 
brought face to face with a National Institution for the encourage¬ 
ment of Art, where there are so many forms of Art almost, it would 
seem, undreamed of. He will think it curious, that all the years, and 
funds, and eloquent after-dinner speeches of individuals distinguished 
in Church and State have gone by, and left men content with so 
little. But he will, if he is a sound-minded person, not tear his hair 
or rage finely : but quietly he will say what he thinks, and explain 
his difficulties, when the times come: and live on in the faith that 
“salvation draweth nigh.” 

And indeed the old content is not quite what it was. I take it to 


8 


ON THE UNITY OF ART. 


be as significant a sign for English Art as any that has appeared for 
many a long day, when sixty or seventy men come together, as they 
came together a week or two since in Chelsea,—sixty or seventy 
men, among whom the picture-painters were in a secure majority,— 
and say out with great determination that there can be no National 
Exhibition of Art, in which all its forms have not their proper repre¬ 
sentation. There are still many of us, who may smile at these 
revolutionists, or pass them over contemptuously: but the future lies 
not with us who smile and are content, perhaps; the future may lie 
with them. Not easily do old prejudices die, nor the scales fall off 
men’s eyes. Not to-day, nor to-morrow, nor the day following do 
just thoughts win their dominion over us; but, except where there is 
only decay, at last they do win. And who knows but that it may be 
in a near future, in a day of rejuvenescence and salubrity already 
beginning to break, when as little shall we think of leaving the 
business-manufacturer to look after our decorations in Tottenham 
Court Road, as we think now of leaving him to look after the charm¬ 
ing pictures of our Academicians ? 


Sf.lwyn Image. 







“LIKE THE DAYS OF AN HIRELING.” 

I cannot hold the days, they are not mine ; 

I may not fill them with the prayer of toil: 

They pass as dead men that, in death, divine 
Their saving souls, long lost in the world’s broil. 

They fly, they fly before God’s face, ah me ! 

Even where the avenger’s feet have been and yet shall be. 

They go between an east and summer west; 

They go as ghosts, looking for that last day, 

Impatient ever of their present rest; 

They go ’twixt hope and fear alway, alway, 

Flying, flying before God’s face. Alas, 

The avenger’s feet have past and yet again must pass ! 

Herbert P. Horne. 


c 


LA ROSE DE L’INFANTE, FROM VICTOR 
HUGO'S “LEGENDE DES SlfeCLES,” 
DONE INTO ENGLISH PROSE. 

N 1878, when Anne Gilchrist was staying at Phila¬ 
delphia, in constant intercourse with Walt Whitman, she 
translated into English prose some nine or ten of the 
pieces of Victor Hugo’s “ Legend of the Ages,” and 
read them to Mr. Whitman, who, as I am told, heard them with 
an unfeigned admiration. It is from these translations that we 
have selected the present version of the “ Rose of the Infanta.” 

Those of our readers who have read the Life of William Blake, 
and to whom the beautiful close of its second volume, the Memoir 
of Alexander Gilchrist, is more than a mere record of facts, will, I 
think, especially welcome it, apart from any value it may possess, 
from the justness of its rendering, as a “ new acquist ” of the 
authoress of that relation. Yet this is but a little contribution. 
The letters and essays of this remarkable woman are shortly to be 
published, of whom it may be well said, in the words she used of 
another, that to a nature like hers “ the cup of life is full of fine 
flavours.” 



The Editor. 











s 



THE ROSE OF THE INFANTA 

















THE ROSE OF THE INFANTA. 


11 


THE ROSE OF THE INFANTA. 

She is a mere child ; a duenna is taking care of her. She holds 
a rose in her hand and looks—at what ? what is she looking at ? 
She scarcely knows. The water, a fountain shaded by the pine and 
the birch, all this is before her, a swan with white wings, the rocking 
of the waves beneath the song of the boughs, and the radiant, 
blossoming, boundless garden. This beautiful angel seems formed 
of snow. See, a great palace standing as in a glory, a park, clear 
pools where the hinds come to drink, and starry peacocks beneath 
long;-tressed woods are there. The whiteness of innocence makes her 
fairness more fair ; her graces are like a sheaf of quivering rays. 
The very grass around this child has splendour, and seems full of fine 
rubies and diamonds ; from the lips of dolphins a stream of sapphires 
flows. 

She stands by the water’s brim, busied with her flower; her 
basquine is of point lace from Genoa; on her petticoat an arabesque, 
straying ’mid the folds of the satin, follows the devious windings of a 
thread of Florentine gold. The unfolding, full spreading rose which 
rises from the fresh bud as from a green urn, sets off the exquisite 
smallness of her hand. When the child, with crimson lips reached 
out, wrinkles her laughing nostrils as she breathes in its perfume, the 
superb, regal, crimson flower half hides the charming face ; so that 
the eye is perplexed between the flower and the beautiful playful 
child, and knows not which is rose-leaf and which cheek. The dark 
eyebrows make more lovely her blue eyes. She is all joy, enchant¬ 
ment, perfume. What sweet looks have the blue eyes! What a 
sweet name, Marie! All sunbeams; her eyes give light, her name 


12 


THE ROSE OF THE INFANTA. 


is a prayer. In the presence of life and beneath the firmament, poor 
little one ! she feels herself vaguely great; she bestows her presence 
on the spring, the light, the shade, on the great sun setting on the 
cloudy horizon, the dazzling splendours of evening, the murmuring 
streams heard but unseen, on the fields, on serene, ever-during nature, 
with the gravity of a little queen. Never has she seen a man 
but bowing down; one day she will be Duchess of Brabant, she will 
govern Flanders or Sardinia. She is the Infanta, five years old, 
disdainful, for so are the children of kings. On their white brows 
is a circle of shadow, and their tottering steps are the beginnings of 
rule. She inhales the breath of her flower, waiting till they pluck 
her an empire ; and already her royal looks say “ It is mine.” From 
her emanates love mingled with vague terror. He who seeing her 
so trembling, so fragile, should lay his hand on her, were it but to 
save her, would have the shadow of the scaffold on his brow ere he 
could move or speak. 

The gentle child smiles; having naught else to do save live and 
hold in her hand the rose, and be there beneath the heavens, amid 
the flowers. 

The day wanes ; from the nests quarrellers come chattering; 
purple hues of sunset are on the branches of the trees; crimson tints 
strike on the brows of the marble goddesses, who seem palpitating 
at the approach of night; all soaring things alight; no sounds, no 
glare ; mysterious evening gathers the sun beneath the wave, and the 
bird beneath the leaf. 

Whilst the child smiles, with the flower in her hand, in the vast 
Roman Catholic palace, whose every ogee shines like a mitre in the 
sun, a terrible form is behind the panes. A shadow seen from below 
as in a mist, wanders from window to window, and one is afraid of it ; 


THE ROSE OF THE INFANTA. 


i3 


sometimes this shadow stands motionless the whole day in one spot, 
like a shade in a burial-ground. The dread creature is as though 
he sees naught; he roams from room to room, pale and dark; he 
presses his white face against the window-panes, and muses ; pallid 
spectre! His shadow lengthens in the evening glow ; his funeral 
step is slow as the knell from a belfry; it is Death, if it be not 
the King. 

It is he ; the man in whom lives and trembles the kingdom. 
If we could look into the eyes of the dark phantom standing at this 
moment with his shoulder against the wall, we should see in its dim 
depths, not the little child, the garden, the rippling water reflecting 
the golden heavens of a clear evening, the woods, the birds billing 
together: no, in those eyes clear as the glassy wave, unfathomable as 
ocean, sheltered beneath ominous brows, we should behold a moving 
mirage, a whole flock of ships flying before the wind, the vast 
trembling motion of a fleet in full sail ’mid the foam, the undulating- 
waves beneath the stars, and in the mist, afar off, an island, a white 
cliff listening for the approach, over the waves, of the thunder. 

Such is the vision now filling the frigid brain of this master of 
men, so that he perceives naught around him. The Armada, the 
formidable, moving fulcrum of the lever with which he is to over-turn 
a world, journeys at this instant over the dim waves; the King 
follows it with the eyes of his soul, a victor; his tragic ennui has 
no other glimmer of relief. Philip the Second was a thing of terror. 
Eblis in the Koran, Cain in the Bible are scarce so black as was this 
royal phantom in his Escurial, son of a like imperial phantom. Philip 
the Second was the Evil One, wielding a sword. He filled the high 
places of the world as a dream. He lived : none dared look at him ; 
fear made a strange light around the King; men trembled merely to 


14 


THE ROSE OF THE INFANTA. 


see his major-domos pass; their bewildered eyes confound him with 
the abyss, and with the stars of blue heaven ! So nearly, in the eyes 
of all men, did he rival God ! His fateful will, overwhelming, 
obstinate, was as a cramping-iron upon Destiny; he held America 
and India; he leaned upon Africa, he ruled over Europe, only in the 
direction of sombre England was he uneasy. His mouth was silence 
and his soul mystery ; his throne was built on snares and frauds ; 
the powers of darkness were his support : like a statue, he sat 
horsed on gloom. Always clad in black, this Almighty of the earth 
looked as if in mourning for having to exist. He was like the 
sphinx who endures and is silent, immutable ; being himself All, he 
had no need of words. Never had this king been seen to smile. A 
smile was as impossible to those lips of iron as dawn to the dark gates 
of hell. If sometimes he shook off his adder-like torpor, it was to help 
the executioner in his task : the gleam in his eyes was reflected from 
the pyres his breath sometimes fanned. He was a terror to thought, 
to man, to life, to progress, to the right, he the devotee of Rome; 
Satan reigning in the name of Jesus Christ: the things which issued 
from his dark soul were like the sinister glidings of vipers. The 
Escurial, Burgos, Aranjuez, his haunts, never illuminated their ghostly 
halls. No festivals, no court, no buffoons ; treachery for sport, auto- 
da-fe for festival. Kings perplexed saw in the night his projects 
darkly unfolded above their heads ; his reverie was a weight upon the 
universe. He had the power and the will to conquer all things, 
break up all things ; his prayers went up with the hollow sound of a 
thunderbolt; lightnings flashed from his deep dreams. Those who 
were in his thoughts said to themselves : “We are being strangled.” 
And the people, from one end of his empire to the other, trembled as 
they felt his gleaming eyes fixed on them. 


THE ROSE OF THE INFANTA. 


i5 


Charles was a vulture, Philip an owl. 

As he stands there in gloomy black doublet with the order of the 
golden fleece round his neck, he is the rigid sentinel of destiny. His 
immobility commands, his eye shines like a crevice in the vault of a 
cavern; his finger makes a mysterious gesture as if writing a 
mandate to Darkness. O miracle! he smiles grimly, a bitter, an 
impenetrable smile. For the vision of his armament at sea grows 
more and more in his sombre thoughts; he beholds it sailing on urged 
by his purpose, as if he were there soaring at the zenith : all goes 
well, the docile ocean grows calm ; the Armada awes it as the ark 
the deluge : the fleet spreads itself out in sailing order, and the 
ships keeping at fixed distances, a chess-board of masts and decks 
and rigging undulates on the waves like a great hurdle. These 
vessels are sacred, the waves make a hedge about them. The 
currents have their part to play in helping the ships to reach the 
shore, and do not fail; round about them the waves caressingly 
dash into spray, the reef changes to a harbour, the foam falls in 
pearls. Behold each galley with its gastadour; some from the 
Scheldt, some from the Adour; the hundred commandants and the 
two high constables. Germany sends her formidable cruisers, Naples 
her brigantines, Cadiz her galleons, Lisbon her seamen, for there is 
need of lions. Philip leans forward, what is distance to him ? He 
not only sees, he hears. They move hither and thither. Hark to 
the sounds from the trumpets, the footsteps of the sailors on the 
decks, the mos90s, the admiral leaning on his page, the drums, 
the boatswain’s whistle, the sailing signals, the call to battle, the 
ominous sepulchral sound of the clearing of the decks. Are those 
cormorants ? Are those citadels ? The sails make a loud hollow 
sound like the beating of wings : the waters roar, and all the vast 


i6 


THE ROSE OF THE INFANTA. 


fleet sails swiftly on, rolling, spreading itself with prodigious noise. 
And the gloomy King smiles to see assembled eighty thousand swords 
on four hundred ships. O savage grins of the vampire glutting his 
hunger. He grasps it at last, that white England! Who can save it ? 
The match is put to the powder! Philip holds, of his own right, the 
sheaf of thunderbolts. Who can wrest it from his grasp ? Is he 
not the sovereign lord whom none contradict ? Is he not the heir 
of Caesar ? the Philip whose shadow stretches from the Ganges 
to Pausillippo ? Is not the last word spoken when he says “ It is my 
will” ? Does he not hold victory by the hair of her head ? Is it not 
he who has launched forth this fleet, these dread ships which he 
pilots, and does not the sea convey them as she ought ? Are not 
these black-winged dragons, a countless flight of them, obedient to 
the beck of his little finger ? Is he not the King ? is he not the 
sombre man to whom this whirlwind of monsters submit ? 

When Cifresil Bey, son of Abdallah Bey, had dug the great wells 
of the mosque, at Cairo, he caused to be inscribed on them, “ Heaven 
is God’s; the earth is mine and as all things are linked, blended, 
related together, all tyrants being but different manifestations of one 
despot, what that sultan said of old, this king thought. 

Meanwhile, by the fountain’s margin, in silence, the Infanta still 
held the rose in her hand gravely, and sometimes, sweet blue-eyed 
angel, she kissed it. Suddenly a breath of air, a breeze such as the 
quivering evening flings over the plain, a riotous zephyr skimming 
the horizon, troubles the water, shakes the reeds, sends a shiver through 
the distant masses of myrtle and asphodel, reaches even to the 
beautiful peaceful child, and with one swift brush of its wing, shaking 
even the overshadowing tree roughly, scatters the petals of the flower 
into the fountain, and the Infanta has but a thorn left in her hand. 


THE ROSE OF THE INFANTA. 


17 


She bends over and sees this wreck upon the water; she cannot 
understand; how is it, then ? She is afraid ; she seeks in the sky 
with amaze this breeze which has dared to displease her, what shall 
she do ? The fountain seems full of anger ; so clear but a moment ago, 
it is black now ; it has waves, it is a turbulent sea ; the poor rose is 
all scattered on the waves ; its hundred leaves wetted and tossed by 
the deep water, wrecked, whirled from side to side by a thousand 
wavelets the breeze stirred up. Is it a fleet foundering we behold ? 
“ Madam,” said the duenna, with her dark face gloomy, to the pensive, 
bewildered child, “ on the earth everything belongs to princes save 
the wind.” 

Anne Gilchrist. 



d 












A CHRISTMAS CAROL. 


“ HAIL! Lady Mary,” said Gabriel, 

(Sing all the world, and all the world) 

“ God sends me now good news to tell.” 

“ And what is the news, O Gabriel ? ” 

“ Lady Mary, God gives you grace ; ” 

(Sing all the world, and all the world) 

“ For a child you shall bear within a space, 
And look on God to His very face.” 

“ Nay, Gabriel, how may this thing be,” 
(Sing all the world, and all the world) 

“ Since there’s never a man that knoweth me 
Said Gabriel, “ Sooth and you shall see.” 

The Lady Mary she bowed her head, 

(Sing all the world, and all the world) 
Nor ever an answer more she said, 

Till all things were accomplished. 

For the Lady Mary she bare her Son : 

(Sing all the world, and all the world) 
When the days’ full course at last was run, 
God’s Self was born for her Little One. 


A CHRISTMAS CAROL. 


19 


Then the Lady Mary she wept and spake, 
(Sing all the world, and all the world) 

“ I have borne my Child for the world’s sake, 
And the cruel world His life will take.” 

But the Lady Mary she laughed and said, 
(Sing all the world, and all the. world) 

“ My Child shall rise again from the dead, 
Lord of all by His great Godhead.” 

Now, Lady Mary, we pray you say 

(Sing all the world, and all the world) 
Some gracious thing to your Son that day, 
When we poor creatures pass away. 

Yea, Lady Mary, Mother of God, 

Save us from sin’s rod ! 

Lady Mary, Mother of Grace, 

Bend on us your sweet face ! 

O Lady Mary, bring us at length 
By strength of Jesus to Jesus’ strength ! 

Amen. 


Selwyn Image. 


THE ITALIAN RENAISSANCE. 



>J the two volumes which he has lately published, 
Mr. Symonds brings his History of the Renaissance in 
Italy to an interesting, but a profoundly sad conclusion. 
He entitles these volumes The Catholic Reaction, and 


the argument by which he justifies his title is, that the stern and rigid 
dogmatism which was imposed on Italy by the Spaniards, destroyed 
the political and intellectual life of the country. A civil and eccle¬ 
siastical despotism was set up and, in consequence of its repressive 
action, Italy was ruined. The evidences of its ruin, in the sphere of 
art, are a painting tasteless, sickly and without life ; and an artificial, 
diffuse, and florid literature. Science was stifled ; and Architecture, 
the most faithful record of a nation’s spirit, became wholly corrupted. 

Mr. Symonds’ facts are undeniable: from the middle of the 
sixteenth century to the middle of the nineteenth, Italian thought 
was fettered; as far as the mental and political life of Europe is 
concerned, Italy was non-existent. The reason which Mr. Symonds 
assigns for this decadence is the true one: an ecclesiastical despotism 
destroyed the freedom, and therefore the creative genius, of Italy. 
But when Mr. Symonds entitles this despotism The Catholic Reaction 
he is, perhaps, though verbally right, yet in reality a little superficial. 

Those who have studied Mediaeval history carefully, and who, at 
the same time, have an intimate knowledge of Catholicism as it exists 
to-day, will appreciate the difference between the Latin Christianity 






THE ITALIAN RENAISSANCE. 


21 


of the Mediaeval ages, and the Romanised, clerical, and ever- 
narrowing Catholicism of the post-Tridentine centuries. This diffe¬ 
rence is enormous. Compared to the narrowness of the Church after 
the Reformation, the Mediaeval Church must be considered broad 
and tolerant. The spirit of the Church in any given period may, 
perhaps, be most accurately tested by the aims, the discipline, and 
the tone of the Religious Orders, which in that period were favoured 
or founded ; because the Religious Orders, naturally, reproduced the 
spirit which was dominant at the time of their foundation, or at the 
time of their greatest vigour. As evidence of this we may point to 
three Orders, which arose at long intervals, with widely different 
aims, and which, in the periods of their vigour, characteristically 
represent the most active Christianity of their time. These Orders 
are the Benedictine, the Franciscan, and the Jesuit. The difference 
between the last of these Orders and either of the previous ones 
expresses, very fairly, the difference between the Mediaeval Latin 
Church, and the Roman Church after the Council of Trent. 

It is neither fanciful nor arbitrary to designate the Mediaeval 
Church as Latin , and the post-Tridentine Church as Roman. We 
may call the Mediaeval Church Latin , not only because Latin was its 
common tongue, for it was the common tongue of all civilized life ; 
but because the great Latin tradition, the theory of the Empire of 
Caesar, was the basis on which both the Nations and the Churches of 
Mediaeval Europe were built up and organized. As long as the 
Mediaeval polity was sound and healthy, Rome meant not only the 
supremacy of Peter, but the sway of Caesar also. And this was true, 
in theory, long after the Sovereign Pontiffs had encroached on the 
Imperial rights. In other words, Rome was not merely the embodi¬ 
ment of ecclesiastical unity, it meant, too, the continuity of secular 


22 


THE ITALIAN RENAISSANCE. 


order and authority ; and it was rather a federalising than a cen¬ 
tralising influence. But after the reign of Charles V., when the 
Empire was no longer Holy, or Roman, or, in any true sense, an 
empire at all, Rome became a merely ecclesiastical expression ; it 
represented a purely sacerdotal and centralising power. The source 
of this power, as far as Italy was concerned, was the rule of Spain ; 
that is the rule and supremacy of the House of Austria : a supremacy 
and rule from which Italy only freed itself in our own days. It 
would be more true, therefore, if Mr. Symonds had styled his volumes 
The Catholic Transformation, rather than The Catholic Reaction. 
For the repression of Italy was caused, not by a return to Medrieval 
Latin Christianity, but by the evolution of our modern, or Roman, 
Catholicism. This evolution, if we may so describe it, was due, 
principally, to three causes. The violence of the so-called Reformers 
was undoubtedly one cause of it; this* both narrowed the borders of 
the Church and embittered its policy. The second cause was the 
growth of the secular spirit, and the transfer of civil administration 
from clerical persons to laymen; this tended to foster the growth of 
that exclusively sacerdotal activity which M. Gambetta has defined as 
Clericalism. The third cause we find paralleled in the history of the 
secular monarchies of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The 
development of the Papal supremacy, of Papal absolutism, is coinci¬ 
dent in time with the rise of the belief in the Right Divine of Kings, 
and with the growth of those un-Mediseval notions of monarchy, 
which were destroyed by the French Revolution. In Mediseval 
times the Bishops were state officials, they were palatines or peers 
with definite civil duties and responsibilities; neither Popes nor 
Kings were absolute ; and national Churches had, both in spirit and in 
fact, a strong feeling of individuality. With the decline of Feudalism, 


THE ITALIAN RENAISSANCE. 


2 3 


with the decay of Imperialism, and with the growth of centralising 
theories, all this passed away ; instead of the federalised Churches of 
Latin Christianity, we find the centralising Papal Church ; the 
episcopate had no scope for its activity except in clerical affairs ; and 
an ever-widening gulf was fixed between sacerdotalism and science. 
These were the causes of the Catholic Transformation. Its effects cul¬ 
minated in the Syllabus, and in the assumption of personal infallibility 
by Pius IX. From the restoration of Clement VII., from the days of 
the Spanish despotism, and from those days only, we may date the 
preponderance of clericalism in Italy, and the permanence of the 
Papal rule in Rome. The heroes of this religious evolution, the 
instruments of the Catholic Transformation, the emissaries and 
supporters of the Papal rule were the J esuits. I leave to the advocates 
of that rule the task of apologising for its results. 

But passing from the main subject of Mr. Symonds’ newest 
volumes, we can proceed to notice his work as a whole. He has 
conferred an inestimable boon on English lovers of art, by collecting 
for them such a mass of information about the Italian Renaissance. 
It is not for us, whose interest in his work is artistic rather than 
historical, to discuss Mr. Symonds as an historian ; nor is it to our 
purpose to criticise him as a theologian or as a philosopher. As 
artists, indeed, we are tempted to criticise both the style of his 
writing, and the subordination and arrangement of his material. 
In style his work leaves very much to be desired. Mr. Symonds’ 
style is far removed from the conciseness, the simplicity, the severe 
restraint which even an English prose classic should possess. And, 
as an historian, he is still farther removed from the minute accuracy, 
the calm impartiality of a Stubbs or a Gardiner ; and from the due, 
and admirable, subordination of multitudinous details which is the 


2 4 


THE ITALIAN RENAISSANCE. 


characteristic excellence of a Gibbon. Mr. Symonds’ book is rather 
a storehouse of materials and authorities for some historian of the 
future, than a history which may be considered as classical or final ; 
but the future historian of the Renaissance will owe Mr. Symonds an 
immense, an incalculable debt. 

The history of the Renaissance is a long one, and it embraces so 
many subjects that we can only consider a few of them. I propose, 
therefore, to touch on those which, from an artistic point of view, are 
applicable to the circumstances of our own time. 

The Renaissance is a perpetual witness to man’s need for beauty, 
and of his unquenchable desire to possess it. “ So immortal, so in¬ 
destructible is the power of true beauty, of consummate form : it may 
be submerged, but the tradition of it survives : nations arise which 
know it not, which hardly believe in the report of it; but they, too, 
are haunted with an indefinable interest in its name, with an inexpli¬ 
cable curiosity as to its nature.” The Renaissance is a witness to 
this yearning for beauty and perfection, which haunts and torments 
the finest human spirits ; in its progress, in its triumphs, and in its 
failures, too, it bears witness, no less clearly, to the source from which 
true beauty, immortal and indestructible, is derived. As if to expose 
the fallacy of Mr. Bright’s latest dictum, the Renaissance proves 
convincingly that civilized man has an instinct for form ; it shows 
that our modern world, through its own unaided efforts, could not 
satisfy this instinct ; and it proclaims that only through the Greek 
world, which Mr. Bright disdains, could man’s craving for perfection 
be fully satisfied. Thus the Renaissance testifies to the inherent 
shortcomings of the modern world, and to the superiority, in all 
matters of artistic form, of the elder civilization. 

In the next place the Renaissance shows how the models of that 


THE ITALIAN RENAISSANCE. 


25 


more perfect civilization should be applied to our modern requirements. 
As the Renaissance was, in its beginning, a literary movement, the 
illustration of this may be taken most conveniently from literature. 
In the correspondence, which we all remember, about the Hundred 
•Greatest Books, there was a letter and a list by Mr. William Morris. 
In his letter, Mr. Morris said that, of all things, he most disliked “a 
cold classicism.” By a cold classicism I suppose he meant a frigid 
and pedantical adherence to Greek or Roman idioms, and forms of 
expression. In this, Mr. Morris was supremely right, nothing in 
literature is more offensive than these freezing artificialities. But so 
many people fail to distinguish between an artificial use of the classics, 
and a healthy use of them. An artificial use of them, I take to be the 
attempt to confine modern thought to the narrower sphere of ancient 
thought; and the endeavour to bind modern language, whether in 
verse or in prose, to the forms and idioms of Greek or Latin. 
These endeavours are always predestined to failure, they do not rival 
the true classics, and they ruin the modern writing in which such 
experiments are made. 

By a healthy use of the classical writers, I mean an understanding 
of their abiding sense for style, of their clearness, simplicity, and 
directness, of their freedom from whims and crotchets ; and, above 
all, an appreciation of their supremacy in the choice, the composition, 
and the arrangement of their materials. In this matter of “ com¬ 
position,” English art, whether it be writing, painting, or sculpture, 
signally fails. In other words, the classics imperiously remind us of 
the necessity of form, if our work is to be, in the true sense of the 
term, artistic. If language is the material of our work, we should try 
to express our thought, not in a Greek or in a Roman mould, but as 
clearly as a Roman or a Greek would have expressed his; we should 


26 


THE ITALIAN RENAISSANCE. 


aim at choosing and arranging our matter as they would have arranged 
and chosen theirs. This, I suppose, is a healthy use of the classics, 
and does not fall under Mr. Morris’ condemnation. In the Renais¬ 
sance we see that good work was done, as long as the classics were 
used healthily; but that very bad work was done, pedantic, artificial, 
frigid work, when the classics were used unnaturally: as they were 
used by the later Humanists. 

The history of the Renaissance tells us many things which, in 
our present artistic and academical condition, we should think about 
seriously. It proves decisively that, in every sphere of art, good 
work must be individual and spontaneous work. The Renaissance 
was an individual movement; a scholar here, a painter or a builder 
there, felt the passion for perfection, and he groped his way towards 
the older world by which, his instinct told him, his longing would be 
satisfied. But he never let his models overpower his individuality, he 
was their scholar and not their slave. 

In Painting, the Renaissance shows us that Academies are the 
ruin of art, but it does not thereby prove that annual exhibitions 
will be its salvation, or that absolute chaos and the absence of all 
teaching are desirable. It shows that the teaching we want is not 
the mechanical, impersonal teaching of an Academy, but the personal 
influence of masters. It proves that art is developed more healthily 
in many local centres than in one all-devouring, over-centralised 
metropolis. And it tells us, most distinctly of all, that Painting must 
not stand aloof, that it must not be haughtily disdainful of the other 
branches of art. 

In Poetry, the Renaissance shows us, first, that an absolute 
deference to critics and a childish dependence on authorities are 
fatal; and, secondly, it proves that the limits of true art may very 


THE ITALIAN RENAISSANCE. 


27 


easily be overpassed. The best writing is not necessarily the most 
elaborate and finished writing; poetry may be killed by the excess 
of its workmanship, just as it may be spoilt by the defects of it. 

A great deal of our contemporary art, especially of our con¬ 
temporary poetry, tempts one to suspect that the future may regard 
our time as a time of artistic decadence. If our poetry is finally 
judged to have failed, it will be for reasons similar to those which 
lead us to condemn a great deal of the poetry of the later Renaissance. 
Our poetry will fail through a bad choice of subjects, and through a 
florid and unrestrained treatment of them ; it will fail because of the 
vagueness and obscurity of its thought, and through the still more 
obscure expression of it. All these defects are present, too, in a 
great deal of our contemporary prose. In poetry and prose alike, 
there is a want not only of directness and simplicity, but even a 
greater want of seriousness and virility. In these days of over-orna¬ 
mented literature writers cannot repeat too often: Le beau en tout 
est ton join's sbvere. If it is true, as I said just now, that Architecture 
is the most faithful record of a nation’s spirit, we may reasonably be 
alarmed about our century, when we consider the revelation of our 
spirit as the architects display it to us. Whatever may be the fate of 
the bulk of our poetry, of the larger proportion of our painting, the 
future must assuredly condemn our building ; for that shows an entire 
absence of any art whatever. 

A careful reader of Mr. Symonds’ volumes cannot fail to notice 
the numerous resemblances between our time, and the closing years 
of the Renaissance. We find then, as we find now, a Painting ruined 
by academical methods ; a Poetry flowery, diffuse, obscure in ex¬ 
pression, tasteless in form, and trivial in spirit; an Architecture mean, 
ignoble, often of sham materials and of slovenly finish : an Architec- 


28 


THE ITALIAN RENAISSANCE. 


ture not of artists but of tradesmen. We find a great deal of frivolous 
talk about criticism, a great deal of fuss about literature, and a widely 
prevalent use of artistic and academic jargon. Of real care for art we 
find very little, and even less understanding of it. So far, then, for 
Mr. Symonds’ work as it concerns ourselves. 

As regards Italy, it is impossible to read these volumes without 
being filled with admiration for her genius, with gratitude for her 
immortal services to art, with pity for her unmerited and abounding 
sufferings, and with a lively belief in her immense future. 

The story of the Italian Renaissance reminds us that not only 
individuals, but nations, have their times of strength and inspiration, 
as well as their times of desolation and sterility. 

“ We cannot kindle when we will 
The fire which in the heart resides ; 

The spirit bloweth and is still, 

In mystery our soul abides.” 


Arthur Galton. 









THE LITE MASK OF WILLIAM BLAKE 











THE LIFE MASK OF WILLIAM BLAKE. 


HOEVER has studied with somewhat more than 
usual attention the only two considerable portraits 1 
of William Blake which his times have left us, I mean 
that painting of Philips and the miniature of Linnell, 
must have concluded with himself somewhat in this way, that, setting 
aside the variant manners of their painters, and the different ages at 
which they were done, if they are true records of the man, they are 
records of contrary moods, and that the facts of the face recorded in 
each are those only that express and insist upon their several tempers. 
Though we are justly careless of the aspect of most men, yet some we 
desire to know for a prohibition, others for an example. But of whom, 
seeing we are not so happy as to possess the Veronica, would we ask 
a likeness rather than of those priests of men on whom were laid the 
very hands of God, and whose lives are the seals of their ordination, 
of those to whom it is said, “Thy whole body is full of light ?” For 
the light of the body is in the eye, and the face is, as it were, but 
the shadow of the mind. 

And though at the first we may be repelled by his limitations, yet 
ultimately, I think, William Blake must be counted of the number of 
these silent priests ; and of him then a true likeness will be asked. 
But it is hard to reconcile the only two portraits that we have of him. 

1 For I cannot account as considerable that little sketch of himself which you will 
find in Gilchrist’s Life, nor that other sketch by his wife, drawn in profile and with 
his hair flaming, which it is now my fortune to possess. 






3 ° 


THE LIFE MASK OF WILLIAM BLAKE. 


We are in need of impartial witness to the truth of either, or, if it may 
be so, of both. Such witness, so far as it relates to the moods 
expressed in them, we already have in his writings and inventions 
and in the record of his life. But where shall we find such a witness 
to the truth of the facts of his face, of the outward “ show of things ? ” 
Happily it is preserved to us in the Life Mask of which we are 
enabled, through the kindness of Mr. George Richmond, to give the 
accompanying photogravure. It was taken by Deville the Phreno¬ 
logist when Blake was about fifty years of age. Much of the forced 
expression of the nostrils, and more particularly of the mouth, is due 
to the discomfiture which the taking of the cast involved ; many of 
Blake’s hairs adhering to the plaster until quite recently. 

It is with such considerations as these, that I would have the 
student of Blake approach his Life Mask. I have purposely avoided 
going into the conclusions to which these considerations would lead ; 
yet I will add one word more about portrait painting in general. 

To paint a great portrait is not merely to select “ the chief lines 
and master-strokes of a face.” Portraiture is the criticism of painting. 
Not criticism as it is commonly understood, but rather a faint, though 
sweet and harmonious echo of that first and most merciful of acts, 
“ Fiat lux.” That opening page of the Jerusalem where the old man 
is taking a star, the sun of a planet like ours, but of greater magni¬ 
tude and of a keener brightness, to search into the inscrutable caverns 
of the mind is a happy figure of it. More is required of the painter 
of a great portrait than the power to express himself with a brush 
and pigments on canvas. He must descend into the wells of the 
being of him whom he would deliver living to all time. He must 
make the master-strokes of his mind shine through the chief lines of 
his face, that thereby we may know him : for “ he whose face gives 
no light shall never become a star.” Herbert P. Horne. 


NOTES ON THE NATIONAL GALLERY 

( Continued ). 

ANDREA DI CIONE [ORCAGNA], 

1308—1368. 

“ Christ’s coronation of his mother.” 

Room XVII., No. 569. 

“ And the emulous heaven yearned down, made effort to reach the earth, 

As the earth had done her best in my passion to scale the sky.” 

ESIDES the more proper work of making fit and fair 
the material of life, the artist’s labour is to dignify the 
expression of ideas by the choicest craftsmanship : to 
refine them of that earthy crust of the common place 
in which they lie embedded in the virgin soil of the mind. To free 
imagination from mean or coarsely figured thought, to furbish ideas of 
noble origin with eloquent effect and with sensuous form seized from 
the outside world, art labours and loves to labour sternly evermore. 
And having in some measure accomplished this, the ideal, made flesh 
to dwell among us, is at length matured, lives its hour, its ages, and 
passes away : the idea returning to the Eternal Being of thought 
about us, to re-appear later in the youth of some fairer mould. For 
the idea is eternal: the mould is of the hour. And if the art be 
imperfect, it is so only from the inadequacy of the clothing as we 










32 


NOTES ON THE NATIONAL GALLERY. 


might weave it in this our elder day. Interesting it does not cease 
to be, since its spiritual intention, which is its living force, is of the 
nature of things that know neither the failing of time nor the fortunes 
of skill. Age after age is impressed by the same motive ; age after 
age gets some grip of it; age after age, “ eager to do and die,” 
attempts to give it shape and substance, only at last to give it up, and 
leave it at once a monument of its own heaven-sent desire, a motive 
of untaught desire for its sons. The open secrets of life, ever as 
open, ever as secret, suffer only some change in the intricacy of the 
pattern—here exceedingly simple, there wondrously subtle—that 
ornaments the veil now in part disclosing, now in part disguising 
them. And here it is exceedingly simple, because the painter has 
yet had but small practice with his material, understanding, as yet he 
does, only its most palpable powers, and by not so much as a dream 
anticipating its hidden possibilities. But these will disclose them¬ 
selves as experiment widens the vision, and then the painter will be 
able to borrow more largely from the outside world. For the present, 
however, the Italian uses his tempera as habit has taught him to use 
his enamel or his mosaic. Light and shade, effects of atmosphere, 
mystery, tone and texture, his materials never before could shape to 
poetic ends, and little encouraged his mind to dwell on these 
ineffectual sources of imagery in nature. Consequently in his 
painting, colours are varied only by simple counter-change of tint, and 
figures are grouped but in the conventional way suggested by 
materials incapable of dealing with effects of distance ; as in this 
group of saints, where the one most palpable fact in the aspect of any 
mass of men does service for all others. 

From the point of view of the toy painter of to-day, this picture is 
most childishly simple, but from the point of view of the man of to- 


ANDREA DI Cl ONE [ORCAGNA]. 


33 


day, the idea is as suggestive, as poetic, as full of interest and reality 
as to Orcagna half a millenium ago. Call the title what we will, its 
meaning and interest are the same for all time. “ Eternity affirms 
the conception of the hour.” For the sentiment which gave rise to 
this conception of the Coronation of Mary was not one singular in its 
attachment to the Mother of God. It is a choice symbol expressive 
of a general feeling towards all women ; the poetic rendering of the 
recognition of woman’s queenship over the empire of that vast world 
embraced by the word “ Home,” a world ruled not by force of law, 
but by the spirit of tenderness and sacrifice. Such chivalric feeling 
became the cradle of this home-hallowed conception, and the one must 
not be dissociated from the other. In the artist’s mind, then, this is 
not so much the crowning of Heaven’s Queen with the symbol of 
authority or with the sign of power, as it is the crowning of a Mother 
with the symbol of those spiritual qualities, by all men recognised as 
her heritage and her charge. And thus art crowns the idea for its 
world-wide hallowing. 

From quite early days it has been usual to represent those to 
whom was attached any kind of superhuman or universal power, as 
crowned or diademed: and most frequently by the radiated form. 
The horns of Moses and of Pan, the radiated crown of Apollo, the 
crown of thorns put upon the brow of Christ [in mock of the power 
He claimed] and the star crown here given to Mary, are all similarly 
significant. If then the idea be not as true and as solemly suggestive 
to us here in London to-day as to those of Florence in Orcagna’s 
age, surely the fault is with us, and not with the idea. For the 
message is missioned by the Genius of Life, though it come out with 
the fullness of human power that might adorn it to-day. 

Moreover, the picture, notwithstanding its strange simplicity, is 

F 


34 


NOTES ON THE NATIONAL GALLERY. 


powerful in the directness of its appeal to the deeper instincts of life, 
and as a work of art is a marvel of expressive detail. In the 
sensitive cast of the mother’s countenance, and in the refined pose of 
her figure, there is a rare degree of eloquence, such as silently 
bespeaks a modesty which would shun, a humility which would 
disallow any sort of self-adornment. Her Lord, to whose will she 
submits herself, is no less monumental in dignity of combined power 
and tenderness. And in the celestial band below, in the maidens 
that play and sing at the mother’s feet, despite their quaint little 
almond eyes, there is a naivete of expression, a simplicity and anima¬ 
tion unequalled at so early a date. In particular she who, singing 
behind the harpist, generously spends her soul in impassioned songs, 
while others, agreeable to nature’s truth, are singing regardless of their 
song, interested only in what is around. Again, in that dual company 
of holy men and women sitting about the throne, reverence stills every 
feature, and a saintly singleness of purpose keeps each eye as they 
look in loving adoration on Him whose dying bought their souls’ 
salvation, or as they lean towards Her whose human heart petitioned 
them to paradise. Grand, patriarchal, and modelled on large types 
are these saints, each individualized by the appropriate symbol of their 
life’s action or agony—Agnes by her lamb, Lawrence by his grid, 
Peter by his key and church (the latter a model of San Piero 
Maggiore, in which the altar-piece stood). 

This Orcagna was professedly an Architect; and the calm, the 
dignity, the monumental grandeur of this composition, designate a 
mind long practised in an art whose essential qualities are pronounced 
order and sternness of simplicity. To him belongs the key that 
opens the treasure-house of Titian and Velasquez; for through the 
stage of art that loves severe symmetry of form and heraldic 


ANDREA D1 CIONE [ORCAGNA]. 


35 


simplicity of colour, must each of us pass, to purchase our appreciation 
of the subtle play of varied tints, the music of disguised rhythm, and 
the lowered tones of masters matured in powers awakened by this 
early art. 

But more than this, we have here no artist who in ignorance of 
its true aim, will isolate his art. Painting with him is the handmaid 
of Architecture, and is always subordinated to and stimulated by some 
function or material need of life. A fresco for a wall, a picture for a 
cabinet, or a piece for an altar he will paint, but Orcagna could as 
soon have hung a plate, as a picture on a wall, so jealous was he of 
the preservation of that relationship with surrounding conditions, 
which can alone make any art one with the place it pretends to 
decorate. For to lose sight of this proportion of things is to lose 
sight of that high function of art which makes it not a luxury, but a 
necessity of life. 

The panels that form the predella of this altar-piece are hung 
about the room, and in them will be seen the same mastery of thought, 
the same vigour of handling, that characterize the Coronation. 

But the distinctive quality of this work is its splendour. This 
blaze of joy is Orcagna’s own—his whose genius discerned the 
meaning of material magnificence when allied to ennobling ideals. 
For to make art glorious, a thing whose one being shall be beauty, is 
the aim, of Orcagna, To be prodigal in the splendour native to 
noble endeavour rather than to bargain with time for his seven days’ 
wage of success, is the temper of an artist governed in his work by 
the propriety of insistance upon things moral to the subordination of 
skill spent in imitation of things material. 

For this, his only satisfaction, did he spend himself in carving to 
lavish richness the shrine of Or San Michele; for this he threw up 


3 6 


NOTES ON THE NATIONAL GALLERY. 


those proud arches of the Loggia dei Lanzi; for this he set the 
jewelled mosaics on Orvieto’s front, and here he catches even rarer 
hues to distinguish the enshrinement of this heart-sanctified ideal or 
ever it be lifted on the altar of his Mother Church. And in this 
splendour no one since has surpassed him, though we are yet but 
seventy years from Cimabue’s triumph—the triumph of open-eyed 
tradition over tradition blindfold and brainless. 

Be well assured it is this magnificence of intention in a mind 
ravished with reverence of a poetic ideal which creates that kind of 
beauty befitting those things to which man most needs his attention 
drawn for like reverence and respect. Td /xlv aia-0jjrwe kparaiv vorjrojv 

aTTUKOviancLTa, Kai h t avra yjEipayojyla /cat oSdc* 

The thought that laid this lavishness of gold without stint upon the 
altar-piece is one with the thought that framed David’s impatient 
remark to Nathan, “See, now, I dwell in a house of cedar, but the 
ark of God dwelleth within curtains.” 

What all priests and prophets have felt to be so reasonable, 
this artist strove to shadow forth in some sort and by such objective 
beauty to win the attention of all, that the alliance of art and religion 
might be as full of power to others as it proved of purpose to him— 
an alliance so inevitable that we may be assured each large idea will 
sooner or later come to be irradiated by art, and as completely com¬ 
passed by beauty as the earth is irradiated by the sun, and her life 
compassed and controlled by the heavens. 


A. H. Mackmurdo. 


VERSES SUGGESTED BY OVID’S LINES 


“ Tot tibi tamque dab it formosas Roma puellas ; 
Haec habet, ut dicas, quidquid in orbe fuit.” 

A. A A. 55.6. 

Had you but eyes, but eyes that move 
Within the light and realm of love, 

Then would you on the sudden meet 
A Helen walking down the street. 


Here in this London ’mid the stir, 

The traffic and the burdened air, 

Had you but eyes that knew their home, 
Then this were Greece, or that were Rome. 


The state of Dian is not gone, 

The dawn she fled is yet the dawn ; 
Her crystal flesh the years renew 
Despite her bodice, skirt and shoe. 


Nor is she only to be seen 
With J uno’s height and Pallas’ sheen ; 
The knit, all-wondrously-wrought form 
Of Cytherea soft and warm 


38 


VERSES SUGGESTED BY SOME LINES OF OVID. 


Yet, like her jewelled Hesperus, 

Puts forth its light and shines on us, 
Whene’er she sees and would control 
Love at the windows of the soul. 

Herbert 



. Horne. 








AN APPEAL. 


S our readers will see, from the circular which accom¬ 
panies this notice, a duty has been laid upon the 
Century Guild. We need not say that it is a most 
welcome duty. It has been decided that a memorial 
shall be raised, somewhere in the Lake District, to the great writers 
who have made that district famous. Our magazine is the medium 
through which this good work is to be made public. The proposed 
memorial is to be no useless monument. It has been suggested that, 
for poets and men of letters, the most suitable memorial is a library, in 
which their works may be found, and their busts or their portraits seen. 
It is our privilege, not only by the magazine to advocate this scheme, 
but by our labour, to do what we can towards carrying it out practically. 

In appealing to our readers, and to the public, for their interest, 
and their liberal support, we feel sure that our words will not fall 
upon unwilling ears. We are pleading not for one poet, but for 
several; and not even for poets only. The memorial is to com¬ 
memorate all those, be they poets, philosophers, critics, historians, 
who have sojourned among the Lakes. We have only to name 
Wordsworth, Coleridge, Southey, and Dr. Arnold, to find an illustrious 
example in each class that we have enumerated. And besides these 
there are other writers, in their works less eminent, or in their lives 
less closely connected with the Lakes, but who, nevertheless, may 
be appropriately connected with the memorial. 

The figure of Wordsworth is, of course, the central, the significant 






40 


AN APPEAL. 


figure which we connect with the Lakes; but it does not dim the 
glory of Wordsworth if his friends share this memorial with him. 
While it is salutary for us to be reminded, as this joint memorial will 
remind us, how many great writers, and how much good literature, 
England has received from writers who have lived in Cumberland 
and Westmorland. 

It may be said that the poets need no memorial, that they live in 
the eternity of their fame. It is true that we can raise to them no 
adequate memorial. If the whole of the English-speaking race were 
federated into a single tax-paying community, the entire revenue of 
that community would not suffice to raise an adequate memorial to 
one immortal poet :— 

Qiice tibi\ quce tali reddam pro carmine dona. 

A true poet gives his people more than they can ever return to him ; 

because the poet gives them the priceless gifts of joy, of charm :— 

Charm is the glory which makes 
Song of the poet divine, 

Love is the fountain of charm. 

Charm is the poet's alone. 

An adequate memorial we can never raise, but that is no reason 
why we should not try to raise a suitable one. And this form of 
memorial, we think, is eminently suitable. 

To all those, then, who have felt the charm of Wordsworth, we 
appeal; that through their help others may have both the means and 
the incitement to feel it too. We cannot repay the joy, the charm, 
which the poets have conferred on us; but we can help to spread 
that joy. A memorial which tends to do that is, if not an adequate, 
yet a suitable memorial; and those who aid in its erection are 
assuredly working humbly and gratefully with the poets. 

The Century Guild. 


THE MEMORIAL 

TO THE MEN OF LETTERS OF THE 
LAKE DISTRICT. 


T has long been wished that the great men of letters 
who are connected with the English Lakes should be 
worthily commemorated by some memorial to them in 
their own district. This wish was expressed at the 
final meeting of the Wordsworth Society, which was held on the 
7th of June, 1886. It was then pointed out that in such a memorial 
three things, specially, were desirable :— 

I. That it should commemorate the illustrious dead in a 
suitable and practical way. 

II. That it should benefit those among whom it is placed. 

III. That it should be interesting, attractive, and stimulating 
to those visitors to the district who care for its great men. 

To secure these ends it was suggested that, perhaps, the most 
suitable Memorial would be a Library and Reading Room ; in which 
the works and lives of these men of letters might be collected, their 
busts and pictures set up, and literary, personal, or other interesting 
relics of them be preserved. 

The Society was in favour of this scheme, and, that the subject 
might be more carefully considered, a second meeting was called 
together, at Burlington House, on Nov. 24th. These ideas were 
laid before it, and were approved. It was also announced to the 

G 





42 


THE MEMORIAL TO THE 


meeting that the Century Guild of Artists, which is interested in all 
literary matters, and which is able to help the matter professionally 
and practically (as it is, now, aiding a Chatterton Memorial, at 
Bristol), had offered the advocacy of its Magazine to the originators 
of the scheme. In addition to this, the architectural directors of the 
Guild promised to submit plans for the approval of the future working 
Committee, and to give their services, gratuitously, to carry out all 
architectural work which the Committee may resolve to undertake. 

This offer was accepted by the meeting, and the scope and 
purpose of the Memorial will be set forth in the Christmas number 
of the Guild Magazine. 

The meeting also appointed a General Committee, in order that 
the scheme might be more publicly and satisfactorily organized. In 
the coming Spring this Committee will assemble a meeting in 
London, which it hopes may authoritatively represent all those 
who are interested in the poets and the great men connected with 
the Lakes. 

The scheme will be fully explained to this meeting; and a 
working Committee will be appointed to carry it out, and to settle 
all the further questions which are connected with the erection of 
the Memorial. 

Those who are to be more specially commemorated by this 
Memorial building, are Wordsworth, Coleridge, and Southey ; but 
one obvious advantage of this form of Memorial is that all the 
illustrious and famous writers who are connected with the Lake 
country may be, at the same time, honoured and kept in memory. 

To enumerate all these is unnecessary; but there is one name 
associated with the Lakes which cannot be omitted : it is the 
venerated name of Dr. Arnold of Rugby, and of Fox How. 


MEN OF LETTERS OF THE LAKE DLSTRLCT. 


43 


The Memorial is, in fact, so planned that it will remind English¬ 
men how much their literature owes to the influence of the Lakes, 
by commemorating all those writers who have been fascinated and 
inspired by that influence. The Committee therefore hope that they 
may be enabled to plan a Memorial which may be worthy of being 
considered a national recognition of the greatness of those in whose 
honour the Memorial is erected. 


GENERAL COMMITTEE. 


The Lord Chief Justice of 
England. 

The Bishop of Salisbury. 

The Bishop of Derry. 

The Bishop of Bedford. 

Sir F. Leighton, P.R.A. 

Sir George Grove, Mus.D. 
The Dean of St. Paul’s. 

The Dean of Salisbury. 

The President of Trinity, 
Oxford. 

Miss Arnold. 

Alfred Austin. 

Miss Mathilde Blind. 

Ford Madox Brown. 

Principal Caird, Glasgow. 
Honble. Mrs. Adams. 

Honble. Ernest H. Coleridge. 


James S. Cotton. 

G. L. Craik. 

Mrs. Craik. 

Arthur Galton. 

Richard Garnett, LL.D. 

H. H. Gilchrist. 

H. Goodwin. 

Professor Gosse. 

Miss Octavia Hill. 

Oliver Wendell Holmes, LL.D. 
Henry Holiday. 

Alfred Hunt. 

Selwyn Image. 

Professor Jack, Glasgow. 
Professor Knight, St. Andrews. 
Arthur H. Mackmurdo. 
George Macmillan. 

Professor F. Max Muller. 



44 


THE LAKE DISTRICT MEMORIAL. 


Professor Nichol, Glasgow. 
Professor Ch. Elliot Norton, 
Cambridge, Mass. 

Francis Turner Palgrave. 

C. Kegan Paul. 

R. A. Potts. 

Miss Quillinan. 

Rev. H. D. Rawnsley. 

Ernest Rhys. 


Herbert Rix. 

W. M. Rossetti. 

William Bell Scott. 

Rev. Cuthbert Southey. 
John Addington Symonds. 
Rev. Edward Thring. 
Aubrey de Vere. 

Mrs. Kemp Welsh. 
Thomas Woolner, R.A. 


All communications may be addressed to :— 

The Secretary of the Century Guild, 

28, Southampton St., Strand, W.C. ; 

or to the Rev. H. D. Rawnsley, Crosthwaite Vicarage, 

Keswick; 

or to Arthur Galton, Esq., 

New College, Oxford. 









THE CENTURY GUILD HOBBY HORSE. 


































































CONTENTS. 


Title-page. Selwyn Image. 

ILLUSTRATIONS. 

PAGE 

The Lady of the Rains. Arthur Burgess. 2 

The Entombment. Ford Madox Brown. to face 41 

The Burial of Stephen. William Strang. to face Si 

Facsimile of Keats’Autograph Sonnet on Blue ...... 81 

In Memoriam; Arthur Burgess. Selwyn Image ...... 90 

Facsimile of William Blake’s Broadsheet of “Little Tom the Sailor.” From 

a unique copy, by kind permission of H. H. Gilchrist, Esq. . to face 121 
Two Cartoons of Stained Glass, executed for St. Martin’s Church, Scarborough. 

D. G. Rossetti. By kind permission of W. M. Rossetti, Esq. 

“A certain man planted a vineyard”. to face 140 

“ This is the heir : come, let us kill him ” .... to face 146 

POEMS. 

A Christmas Carol. Selwyn Image. 3 

Vanitas. Selwyn Image. 5 

A Song. Herbert P. Horne. 6 

On Certain New Buildings in Covent Garden. Herbert P. Horne . . 7 

Four Sonnets to four Statues. Arthur Galton :— 

1. To the Venus de’ Medici ........ 42 

2. To the Apollo Belvedere.43 

3. To Pallas Athene. 44 

4. To the Bargello Hermes.45 

Three Songs. Herbert P. Home :— 

1. Of my Mistress’ Presence.46 

2. Her Eyes ........... 46 

3. A—further—Meditation for his Mistress ..... 47 

Sonnet: To the Century Guild. Arthur Galton . . . . . . 87 

Song from an Unfinished Drama. Herbert P. Horne . . . . . 88 

In Memoriam ; H. L. G. Herbert P. Horne.89 

The Madonna di San Sisto. William Bell Scott . 


121 










VI 


CONTENTS. 


ESSAYS. 

PAGE 

Three Notes on Art. Selwyn Image :— 

I. On the Representation of the Nude ...... 8 

II. On the Theory that Art should represent the surrounding Life . 13 

III. On Art and Nature.16 

Ford Madox Brown : Characteristics. W. M. Rossetti .... 48 

Thomas Augustine Arne. E. W. Christie ....... 55 

Keats’ Sonnet on Blue. Oscar Wilde ........ 81 

On Catholicity of Taste. Selwyn Image.91 

Assisi. Arthur Galton. 95 

A Study of Inigo Jones. Herbert P. Horne.123 

Some Notes on D. G. Rossetti. Frederic Shields.140 

Notes on the National Gallery. Arthur H. Mackmurdo :— 

a. “ Forenoon Echoes of Love’s Evensong ”.19 

I. Margheritone of Arezzo ........ 21 

II. Cimabue ........... 28 

III. Giotto..34 

Taddeo Gaddi.69 

Duccio of Siena . . . . . . . . . . 116 

Ambrogio Lorenzetti . . . . . . . . . 155 

Nescio quae nugarum:— 

No. I. At the Charterhouse. Herbert P. Horne .... 77 

No. II. St. Paul’s Cathedral. Arthur H. Mackmurdo . . . 78 

No. III. The Ballad of “ Little Tom the Sailor.” H. H. Gilchrist . 159 

Correspondence.80 


UPB 













THE CENTURY GUILD WORK. 


The Architects : 


Messrs. Mackmurdo & Horne, 

28, Southampton St., 

Strand, W.C. 


Business Agents for Furniture and Decoration, Tapestries, Silks, Cretonnes, 
Wall Papers, etc. : 

Messrs. Wilkinson & Son, 

8, Old Bond St., W. 

Messrs. Goodall & Co., 

15 & 17, King St., 

Manchester. 


Picture Frames designed by the Guild : 

Mr. Murcott, Framemaker, 

6, Endell St., 

Long Acre, W.C. 

Wrought Iron Work : 

Mr. WlNSTANLEY, 

The Forge, 

Bush Hill Park, Enfield, N. 


Beaten and Chased Brass and Copper Work : 

Mr. E sling, 

At the Agents of the Century Guild. 


In drawing attention to our own work, we have added, with their permission, the 
names of those workers in art whose aim seems to us most nearly to accord with the 
chief aim of this magazine. Our list at present is necessarily limited, but with time 
and care we hope to remedy this defect. 

Embroidery : 

The Royal School of Art Needlework, 

Exhibition Road, 

South Kensington, W. 

Engraved Books and Facsimiles of the Works of Wm. Blake : 

Mr. Muir, 

The Blake Press, 

Edmonton. 

To be had of Mr. Ouaritch, 

15, Piccadilly, W. 

During the new year, Mr. Muir hopes to publish engraved works from the 
designs of Mr. Herbert P. Plorne. 

Carpets, Silks, Velvets, Chintzes and Wall Papers, and Painted Glass: 

Messrs. Morris & Company, 

449, Oxford St., W. 

Carving, and Modelling for Terra Cotta or Plaster Work : 

Mr. B. Creswick, 

At the Agents of the Century Guild. 


Designing and Engraving upon Wood : 

Mr. W. H. Hooper, 

5, Hammersmith Terrace, W. 

Flint Glass, cut and blown, also Painted Glass : 

Messrs. J. Powell & Sons, 

Whitefriars Glass Works, 

Temple St., E.C. 


Painted Glass, and Painting applied to Architecture and Furniture : 

Mr. Selwyn Image, 


51, Rathbone Place, W.C. 


Painted Pottery : 


Mr. William De Morgan, 

36, Great Marlborough St., 

Regent St., W. 


Printing : 


The Chiswick Press, 

21, Tooks Court, Chancery Lane, E.C. 


Mezzotints : 


Mr. Charles Campbell. 

Mr. Campbell’s new plate after Mr. E. Burne Jones’ picture of “Pan and Psyche,” 
may now be seen at Mr. Dunthorne’s, printseller, Vigo St., Regent St., W. 


Reproductions of Pictures : 

Photographs of Pictures by D. G. Rossetti, 

To be had of Mr. W. M. Rossetti, 

5, Endsleigh Gardens, N.W. 

Platinotype Photographs from the Works of G. F. Watts, R.A., E. Burne 
Jones, A.R.A., and others, 

Mr. Hollyer, 

9, Pembroke Square, 

Kensington, W. 


Processes for Reproduction of Pictures and Drawings as used in this 
Magazine, 


Messrs. Walker & Boutall, 

16, Clifford’s Inn, 

Fleet St., E.C. 


CHISWICK PRESS :—C. WHITTINGHAM AND CO. TOOKS COURT, CHANCERY LANE. 








CENTURY GUILD MUSIC ROOM, INVENTIONS EXHIBITION. 



/ 


WILKINSON & SON, 8, OLD BOND STREET, W., MACKMURDO & HORNE, ARCHTS-, 

MANUFACTURERS. FURNITURE & STUFFS TO 28, SOUTHAMPTON STREET, STRAND, W.C. 

BE SEEN AT THEIR SHOW ROOMS. 













* 



w O 




























CO 

- 

c 



o 





















v 












X 

H 

> 

& 

€: 





- 








■ * o?i -jjy iuo y^uth?'- 









t: