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tongue, has amused his leisure hours by trying into how small a compass wit, wisdom and elegance, may be packed. The notes to the last edition of his poems are not merely treasure-houses of anecdote and illustration, but admirable studies in composition for those who will be at the pains of ascertaining the precise language in which the same thoughts or incidents have been expressed in verse or related by others.” Of an essay on assassination, written for insertion among the poems on Italy, Mackintosh wrote him that “ Hume could not improve the thoughts, nor Addison the language." And Moore says, in his diary, that he feels it would do one good to study such writing, if not as a model, yet as a chastener and simplifier of style, it being the very reverse of ambition or ornament.
It is well said, by a writer in the Quarterly Review, that there are few precepts of taste which are not practised in Mr. Rogers' establishment, as well as recommended in his works. In illustration of the remark, he alludes to a novel and ingenious mode of lighting a dining-room, which might be well imitated wherever there are fine pictures. Lamps above or candles on the table there are none, but all the light is reflected by Titians, Reynolds', &c., from lamps projecting out of the frame of the pictures, and screened from the company. His house in St. James' Place is small, but overflowing with the choicest specimens of the fine arts, pictures, antique bronzes, sculptures and literary curiosities of uncounted value. The following detailed description of the works of art which adorn this hospitable mansion is from the pen of Professor Waagen, of Berlin :
By the kindness of Mr. Solly, who continues to embrace every opportunity of doing me service, I have been introduced to Mr. Rogers the poet, a very distinguished and amiable man. He is one of the few happy mortals to whom it has been granted to be able to gratify, in a worthy manner, the most lively sensibility to everything noble and beautiful. He has accordingly found means, in the course of his long life, to impress this sentiment on everything about him. In his house you are everywhere surrounded and excited with the higher productions of art. In truth, one knows not whether more to admire the diversity or the purity of his taste. Pictures of the most different schools, ancient and modern sculptures, Greek vases, alternately attract the eye ; and are so arranged, with a judicious regard to their size, in proportion to the place assigned them, that every room is
richly and picturesquely ornamented, without having the appearance of a magazine from being overfilled, as we frequently find. Among all these objects, none is insignificant; several cabinets and portfolios contain, beside the choicest collections of antique ornaments in gold that I have hitherto seen, valuable miniatures of the middle ages, fine drawings by the old masters, and the most agreeable prints of the greatest of the old engravers, Marcantonio, Durer, etc., in the finest impressions. The enjoyment of all these treasures was heightened to the owner by the confidential intercourse with the most eminent, now deceased, English artists, Flaxman and Stothard ; both have left him a memorial of their friendship. In two little inarble statues of Cupid and Psyche, and a mantel-piece, with a bas-relief representing a muse with a lyre and Mnemosyne by Flaxman, there is the same noble and graceful feeling which has so greatly attracted me, from my childhood, in his celebrated compositions after Homer and Æschylus. The hair and draperies are treated with great, almost too picturesque softness. Among all the English painters, none, perhaps, has so much power of invention as Stothard. His versatile talent has successfully made essays in the domains of history, or fancy and poetry, of humor, and, lastly, even in domestic scenes, in the style of Watteau. To this may be added much feeling for graceful movements, and cheerful, bright coloring. In his pictures, which adorn a chimney-piece, principal characters from Shakspeare's plays are represented with great spirit and humor ; among them, Falstaff makes a very distinguished and comical figure. There is also a merry company, in the style of Watteau ; the least attractive is an allegorical representation of Peace returning to the earth, for the brilliant coloring, approaching to Rubens, cannot inake up for the poorness of the heads and the weakness of the drawing.
“ As there are among the pictures some of the best works of Sir Joshua Reynolds, fine specimens of the works of three of the most eminent British artists of an earlier date are here united.
“ Beside portraits, properly so called, Sir Joshua Reynolds was the happiest in the representation of children, where he was able, in the main, to remain faithful to nature, and in general an indifferent but naïve action or occupation alone was necessary. In such pictures, he admirably succeeded in representing the youthful bloom and artless manners of the fine English children. This it is which makes his celebrated strawberry-girl, which is in this collection, so attractive. With her hands simply folded, a basket under her arm, she stands in a white frock, and looks full at the spectator, with her fine, large eyes.
The admirable impasto, the bright, golden tone, clear as Rembrandt, and the dark landscape back-ground, have a striking effect. Sir Joshua himself looked upon this as one of his best pictures. A sleeping girl is also uncommonly charming, the coloring very glowing ; many cracks in the painting, both in the background and the drapery, show the uncertainty of the artist in the mechanical processes of the art. Another girl with a bird does not give me so much pleasure. The rather affected laugh is, in this instance, not stolen from nature, but from the not happy invention of the painter ; in the glowing color there is something specky and false. Puck, the merry elf in Shakspeare's Midsummer Night's Dream, called by the English Robin Goodfellow, represented as a child, with an arch look, sitting on a mushroom, and full of wantonness, stretching out arms and legs, is another much admired work of Sir Joshua. But, though this picture is painted with much warmth and clearness, the conception does not at all please me. I find it too childish, and not fantastic enough. In the back-ground, Titania is seen with the ass-headed weaver. Psyche with the lamp, looking at Cupid, figures as large as life, is of the most brilliant effect, and, in the tender, greenish half-tints, also of great delicacy. In the regard for beautiful leading lines, there is an affinity to the rather exaggerated grace of Parmeggiano. In such pictures by Sir Joshua, the incorrect drawing always injures the effect. I was much interested at meeting with a landscape by this master. It is in the style of Rembrandt, and of very strong effect.
“Of older English painters, there are here two pretty pictures by Gainsborough, one by Wilson ; of the more recent, I found only one by the rare and spirited Bonington, of a Turk fallen asleep over his pipe, admirably executed in a deep, harmonious chiaro-oscuro. Mr. Rogers' taste and knowledge of the art are too general for him not to feel the profound intellectual value of works of art in which the management of the materials was in some degree restricted. He has, therefore, not disdained to place in his collection the half-figures of St. Paul and St. John, and fragments of a fresco painting from the Carmelite Church at Florence, by Giotto ; Salome dancing before Herod, and the beheading of St. John, by Ficsole ; a coronation of the Virgin, by Lorenzo de Condi, the fellow-scholar and friend of Leonardo da Vinci, whose productions and personal character were so estimable. Next to these pictures is a Christ on the Mount of Olives, by Raphael, at the time when he had not abandoned the manner of Perugio. This little picture was once a part of the predella to the altar-piece which Raphael painted in the year 1505, for the nuns of St. Anthony, at Perugio. It came with the Orleans gallery to England, and was last in the possession of Lord Eldin, in Edinburgh. Unhappily it has been much injured by cleaning and repairing, but in many parts, particularly in the arms of the angel, there are defects in the drawing, such as we do not find in Raphael even at this period. So that, most probably, the composition alone should be ascribed to him, and the execution to one of the assistants, who painted the two saints belonging to the same predella now in Dulwich College.
- From the Orleans gallery, Mr. Rogers has Raphael's Madonna, well known by Flipart’s engraving, with the eyes rather cast down, on whom the child standing by her fondly leans. The expression of joyousness in the child is very pleasing. The gray color of the underdress of the Virgin, with red sleeves, forms an agreeable harmony with the blue mantle. To judge by the character and drawing, the composition may be of the early period of Raphael's residence at Rome. In other respects, this picture admits of no judgment, because many parts have become quite flat hy cleaning, and others are painted over. The landscape is in a blue-greenish tone, differing from Raphael's manner.
66 Of the Roman school I will mention only one more. Christ bearing his cross, by Andrea Sacchi, a moderate-sized picture from the Orleans gallery, is one of the capital pictures of this master, in composition, depth of coloring, and harmony.
“ The crown, however, of the whole collection, is Christ appearing to Mary Magdalene, by Titian. It was formerly in the possession of the family of Musolli at Verona, and afterward adorned the Orleans gallery. In the clear, bright, golden tone of the flesh, the careful execution, the refined feeling, in the impassioned desire of the kneeling Magdalene to touch the Lord, and the calm, dignified refusal of the Saviour, we recognize the earlier time of this master. The beautiful landscape, with the reflection of the glowing horizon upon the blue sea, which is of great importance here, in proportion to the figures, proves how early Titian obtained extraordinary mastery in this point, and confirms that he was the first who carried this branch to a higher degree of perfection. This poetic picture is, on the whole, in very good preservation ; the crimson drapery of the Magdalene is of unusual depth and fulness. The lower part of the legs of Christ have, however, suffered a little. The figures are about a third the size of life.
" The finished sketch for the celebrated picture, known by the name of La Gloria di Tiziano, which he afterward, by the command of Philip II., King of Spain, painted for the church of the convent where the Emperor Charles V. died, is also very remarkable. It is a rich, but not very pleasing composition. The idea of having the coffin of the emperor carried up to heaven, where God the Father and Son are enthroned, is certainly not a happy one. The painting is throughout excellent, and of a rich, deep tone in the flesh. Unfortunately, it is not wanting in re-touches. The large picture is now in the Escurial.
“ As the genuine pictures of Giorgione are so very rare, I will briefly mention a young knight, — small, full-length, noble and powerful in face and figure ; the head is masterly, treated in his glowing tone; the armor with great force and clearness in the chiaro-oscuro.
“ The original sketch of Tintoretto, for his celebrated picture of St. Mark coming to the assistance of a martyr, is as spirited as it is full and deep in the tone.
“ The rich man and Lazarus, by Giacomo Bassano, is, in execution and glow of coloring, approaching to Rembrandt, one of the best pictures of the master.
" There are some fine cabinet pictures of the school of Carracci : a Virgin and Child, worshipped by six saints, by Lodovico Carracci, is one of his most pleasing pictures in imitation of Corregio. Among four pictures by Domenichino, two landscapes, with the punishment of Marsyas, and Tobit with the fish, are very attractive, from the poetry of the composition and the delicacy of the finish. Another likewise very fine one of Bird-catching, from the Borghese Palace,