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Remarks on Engraving on Wood.
III of every one who has not time and abili Hitherto the only specimens of modern ties to study and comprehend fo hetero- engravings on wood that have been ofgeneous a jargon.
fered to the public, have been upon a Whilst the present rage for systematic finall scale; probably, because of the difreform through the regions of nature ficulty of finding wood of a large enougla lalts, I could with the numerous and in- fize fit for the purpole, for I am informed, telligent reformifts would direct their at our modern artists use only box-wood. But tention awhile from the classification to from what I have seen of wood engravings the language of natural history. Here of late, I should suppose, t' at, confidered an ample field is open for their exertions, as a fine art, it was much better adapted and I am confident that their well-di- for producing a grand effect in large works rected labours would be crowned with than in small things, because it admits of the happiest ftrccess, both in clearing the a rich fullness of thade, a mellow softness path to the study of nature of its great- in their gradations, and a great strength eft incumbrance, and in ensuring their of touch, which can be effected in no other fame by the gratitude of all who now mode that hath ever yet been attempted. groan under the weight of the barbarous But, as I am no artist myself, I throw phraseology with which the fublime and out this hint merely for the consideration important science of natural history in of others, without pretending to decide. all its departments is embarrassed. It is, however, as an useful rather than
Yours, &c. a fine art, that I think the chief value of Feb. 6, 1998.
R. H. N. this invention consists. It is well known,
that where many topies of a book with To the Editor of the Monthly Magazine. prints are fold, the expence of taking off SIR,
the impressions on copper greatly enhances EWICK's Birds lately published, the price; and engravings on copper are the subject of engraving on wood, which every delicate touch is sensibly diminished I beg leave to submit to your considera- almost by every impression that is taken tion. If you shall think them deserving a of it: and even the strongest engravings place in your useful Magazine, they are that can be made upon copper, are' soon entirely at your service.
worn down; so as to require to be reThe mode of engraving on wood, as
touched several times, before a numerous practised by the first discoverers of that impression can be worked off. I need not art, was extremely different from that, add, that after every such retouching, the which is now followed by the BEWicks, impressions are much inferior to what they and some other artists in Britain. The were before the forn. ir engraving was excellence of the old engravings confifted worn down. In this way, the value of in the general correctness of the drawing, different copies of the fame impreslion of and the spirited boldness of some rough the books must be greatly altered, though touches, which gave energy to the design, all must be sold at the same price. In rebut the manner was hard and dry; nor gard to engravings on wood, the cale is does it seem to have been even tuspected very different. I have been affinred, on at that time, that it was possible to pro- the best authority, that a wood-cut, duce a full deep and mellow shade on a strongly engraved, if it gets common juswood-cut, though it is now found that tice done to it, will not be sensibly worle this can be better effected by an engrav. after an hundred thousand impressions ing on wood than by any other mode of have been taken from it, aud perhaps ten engraving that has hitherto been adopted. times that quantity may be taken before Whether it is equally capable of produc- it has received such injury as to bring it ing that mellow softness in the lighter to the state of a common copper-plate, tints, which can easily be effected on that requires to be retouched. Add to copper, is still a matter of doubt, though, this, that the expence of taking off the if I were to judge from some specimens impressions will not be, I have good reaI have seen, of the performance of a young con to believe, one fiftieth part of that of artist, whose name is not yet known to copper-plate engravings of the same size; the public, I should be inclined to believe and it is obvious, that the diminution of that it might, even in this respect also, expence, by adopting this mode of engravbe brought to rival that on copper itself, ing, in regard to works of extensive sale, But of this I wish to speak at present with will be amazing, even if the original endiffidence, being conscious that the pub-" graving should have cost the same fum as bic must doubt in regard to those things if done upon copper. I have been assured, they have never seen,
Engraving on Wood... Similes from Homer. by a gentleman who has made the calcu Mathematical dicgroms and machinery lation, and on whose accuracy I can con- of every fort, may thus be executed with fidently rely, that, if the plates for the the greatest accuracy and neatness. “ Encyclopædia Britannica" had been en In natural history, the specimens that graven on wood instead of copper, (and Bewick has given in his beasts and birds, they could have been done much better few what it is capable of. For delineatthan those are) and allowing the same lum ing insects, thells, and minerals, it is perfor originally engraving the one as the haps yet' better calculated to produce a other, the saving on each plate, for one fine effect than in those specimens that impression only of that work, would have have been already exhibited. exceeded ten guineas, so that the total I will not take up more of your paper gain to the proprietors of that work, by enumerating a greater number of pararising from this circumstance alone, ţiculars. What I have said will, I think, would have exceeded four thousand guineas be fufficient to prove, that the art of enon one impression only.
graving on wood promises to be of much From those confiderations, it is obvious utility to mankind in general, by dimithat every work which can command an nishing the price of some works of priextensive fale, and which requires to be mary importance to society, on which acillustrated by engravings, will afford a count it deserves to be encouraged and much greater profit to the undertaker if cultivated with affiduity. these are executed on wood than on copper. Jan. 1, 1798.
N. M. And, as the plates can remain equally good for a second, a third, or a fourth
For the Monthly Magazine. impression, as for the first, it will, in some measure, fecure a copyright in the book, SIMILES OF Homer, VIRGIL, AND because no one, who has to pay for new
MILTON, (CONTINUED.) engravings, could afford to feil an im
From Wild Beasts. preffion fo cheap as he could do who has HMR blervation of the various the plates for nothing.
The question then comes to be, What actions and characters of the ferocious kind of works of general utility admit of animals, which, in the ruder states and being illustrated by engravings on wood pastoral occupations of mankind, muft equally well as if they were done upon he objects of capital importance. Their copper? I here put works of taste entirely encounters with each other, the devastaout of the question, and consider utility tions they occalion among the domestic enly:
kinds, and the mutual warfare carried on In this point of view, the first place in between them and the human fpecies, regard to importance ought, perhaps, to cannot fail to impress the mind with a be assigned to anatomy. From the speci- variety of Atriking ideas. The applimens I have already feen, I am perfectly cation of images, borrowed from this satisfied that anatomical plates can be ex- fource, to the circumstances of military. ecuted on wood with all the precision transactions, is so obvious, that little possible on copper, and, in some particu- ingenuity is to be looked for in the dissars, (especially those where the muscles covery either of general or particular are represented) with much greater ele points of resemblance; and the merit gance and beauty. A set of such plates, of comparisons, from this source, must if executed from accurate designs, by chiefly consist in the force and accuracy having the whole civilized globe for a of description. The Grecian bard, in market, (the explanations being easily these respects, is certainly unrivalled :
printed in different languages) could be every line in his descriptive pieces is a afforded at a very low price, to as to bring proof that he copied from nature herself; them within the reach of every student of and his fucceffors in epic poetry haye physic; while the undertaker would be done little more in their happiest efforts, insured in a moft abundant profit. than judiciously selecting, and adorning
The next subject of general importance with the beauties of di&tion, the various is archite&ture. · Wood-engraving is pe- circumstances with which he had fur.culiarly fitted to produce beautiful works nished them. of this class, at a very
expence. Amidst the fimiles of this class, those Heraldry is another subject that admits in which the Lion forms the principal of being illustrated by wood-engravings figure are by much the most frequent in with fwguiar propriety, as I am satisfied the works of Homer. The generous of from fome ipecimens of this fort I courage and terrific force of this noble have lately seen.
Similes of Homer, Virgil and Milton.
113 animal rendered him peculiarly proper
The Lion thus for comparison with the warriors of an Whom, leaping at the fold, some hepherd age of heroes; when, from the artificial swain, modes of combat, the strength and prow
His flocks defence, has struck with feeble,
wound, ess of a single individual became emi
Now urg'd to mighty rage, no more renently conspicuous, and were of great
puls'd, moment in deciding the event of a battle. He clears the fence, and 'mid the crowd for.
To consider every example in which the lorn fimile of a lion is introduced, would Spreads dire dismay; in heaps they ftrew the prove tedious and uninteresting, on ac
soil; count of the frequent sameness, both of Then proudly springs again
the lofty mound: the original and resembling scene. I So sprung Tydides on the Trojan hoft. shall therefore select a few, the most va
II. v. 136. rious in their circumstances and appii The impetuous courage of Diomed is cation, and of the greatest value as natu- with peculiar propriety resembled to that ral representations.
of the Lion, and the circumstance of his The comnion occurrence in countries receiving a slight wound from the arrow, infested by wild beasts, of a nightly at. of Pandarus, is exadly paralleled in tack upon the folds or stalls, by a lion, the fimile. has given occasion to three striking fimi The retreat of the Lion, reprefented lies in Homer, each distinguished by in the first of these passages, is described some variation in the circumstances. In in a fimile by Virgil, but less cireumthe first I shall adduce, the assault is ef- ftantially, and without the accompany, lectually repelled--
ment of the nightly attack. As from the folded stalls a nightly guard
Ceu sævum turba leonem Of dogs and rustics all the rage repel Cum telis premit infensis; at territus ille, Of some fierce Lion, greedy for the flesh Afper, acerba tuens, retro redit; & neque Of fatted kine: in vain he rushes on;
terga So thick the javelins hurl'd by vent’rous Ira dare aut virtus patitur; nec tendere con hands,
tra, And flaming torches fly, that held in awe, Ille quidem hoc cupiens potis est per tela Though much defiring, at the morning's dawn virosque : Sad he retires. The mighty Ajax thus, Haud aliter retro dubius veftigia Turnus With • swelling breast indignant quits the Improperata refert, & mens exæftuat ira. field.
Æn. ix. 792. This is a characteristical and well As when with tilted spears the clanı'roys painted picture, but not perfectly exact train in the application; since Ajax is not
Invade the brindled monarch of the plain, making an attack on the enemy, like the The lordly savage from the shouting for lion, but is standing upon the defensive.
Retires, majestically ftern and now, In the next instance, the powers of the Tho'singly impotent the croud to dare, assailant and defenders are almost equally Grim he looks back; he rolls his glaring eye,
Repel or stand their whole collected war; balanced, and this equality takes place Despairs to conquer; and disdains to fly. both in the real and the resembling scene. So Turnus pausd; and by degrees retired; Sarpedon's fpirited attempt to break While shame, disdain, and rage, the hero through the Grecian rampart, is thus fir'd.
There is more of sentiment in this pie. So, when a Lion, 'mid the mountains ture than in that of Homer, but less of bred,
nature. The Lion of the Greek poet Long hung'ring, feels th’adventurous im- combats for prey, and his unwillingneis pulse urge
to retreat only proceeds from his hunger. To try the well-barr’d circuit of the fold; That of the Roman fights for glory, and If chance he find the guardian-Swains around, is withheld from flying by thame. He With dogs and spears in watch, he yet dis- is a happier object of comparison for a dains
hewo; but is a less faithful representaAttemptless to retreat; but leaping in,
tive of an aniinal which, notwithstanda Or bears away the spoil, or front to front Receives from some swift arm the piercing ing all the stories of his magnanimity, has fteel.
probably no moral qualities different from
those of other Garnivorous wild beasts. In the following passage the assailant is His propensity at all hazards to reonly roused to greater exertions by refiit- verge an affront (a point of character ance, and proves completely victorious. common to various of the larger preda. MONTH, MAG. No. XXVII,
Il. xi. 547
Il. xii. 299.
Similes, &C..... English Versification: tory animals) is represented by Homer his paffage across the Grecian rampart; in a most animated manner in the pallage, and is therefore, like one of the former', of which the following is a tranllation : defective in comparing an action of al
sault to one of defence. The dreadful Lion thus, Whom all th' assembled country round pur- has applied it with more exa&nefs to He
Virgil, in a concise copy of this fimile, fue, Intent to kill, at first moves careless on,
lenor encompassed by assailing enemies. Till, by the spear of some bold hunter truck, Ut fera, quæ densa venantum fepta corona He writhing yawns, he foams, his generous Contra tela furit, seseque haud nescia morti breast
Injicit, & faltu super venabula fertur: Indignant groans, with busy tail his fides Haud aliter juvenis medios moriturus in hoAnd loins he lashes, rousing to the fight;
ftes Then sternly scouling, ruthes herdlong on, Irruit : & qua tela vidit denfiffima, tendit. Resolved on siaughter, or a glorious death.
Æn. ix. 551. II. xx. 164.
As the stern savage, whom the train furAs a simile, this noble picture seems rounds Arangely misplaced, or thrown away, of shouting hunters, Ateeds, and opening kince it is only introductory to the single hounds, combat in which Achilles, not ruounded, On death determined, and devoid of fears, or particularly irritated, engages with Springs forth undaunted on a grove of fpears. Æneas, an unequal adverfary.
So, bent on death, where thick the javeling
rise, Virgil has given a spirited imitation of this paffage, applying it, as loosely Fierce on the close enibattled war he fies.
Pitt. as Homer had done, to Turnus, inflamed to fury by the public outcry against him,
The circumstance of the beast's leaping after the unsuccessful beginnings of the over the hunting-poles, is happily ima, war against Æneas.
gined. Dryden, in
chuses to make the animal a stag. J. A. Penorum qualis in arvis Saucius ille gravi venantum vulnere pectus,
(To be continued.) Tum demum movet arma leo; gaudetque
To the Editor of the Monthly Magazine: Excutiens cervice toros, fixumque latronis Impavidus fraugit telum, & fremit ore cru. SIR,
N answer to your correspondent, L Haud fecus accenso glifcit violentia Túrno.
£n. xii. 4. the MONTHLY MAGAZINE, I sent a few As pierced at distance by the hunter's dart, general observations on English versificaThe Lybian Lion roufes at the smart, tion. With your permission I will now And loudly roaring traverses the plain, pursue the subject a little further. Scourges his fides, and rears his horrid mane, Aristotle, who has called poetry imi
Tugs furious at the spear, the foe defies, tation, calls mufic ομοίωοματα της οργης And grinds his teeth for rage, and to the
και πραότητος, the likenefes of anger and combat flies : So storm'd proud Turnus.
gentleness, &c. this correspondence he
makes to depend on rhyme and melody The added circumftances of * 1haking σι τοις Ρυθμούς και Μελεσι. In this point his bristling mane,” and “ breaking the of view poetry and music are kindred spear fixed in his fide,' are well conceived, arts : and the analogy with respect to and expressed with great vigour. rhyme, expression, and effect, is much
I fall add another picture of a similar closer than many imagine. kind, from Homer, chiefly on account of Sourd has an influence on passion; an the accurate minuteness with which it influence not connected with an associaJepresents the chace of a wild beast, as tion of ideas, but with the tendency of Still practised in various countries. certain tones to excite particular moveAs when amid the throng of dogs and men
ments in the nerves. This is true of A Boar or Lion fiercely glaring stands ; musical sounds; it is also true of metri. Close wedg’d in troops, the hunters round ad- cal. These movements, however, are vance,
not always produced in vertė, by causes And launch the frequent spear ; yet undif- uniformly the same; sometimes it is by may'd,
a particular movement of the verse, as Nor fear nor fight his generous heart allows, that of Homer, But spurs him to his fate : the bands of foes Ole turning he assails; as oft the foes Ητοι ο μεν σκηρυπτομενος χερσντε ποσιντε Where'er the rushes, yield.
Λααν ανω ωθεσκε, &c. The application is to Hector trying
II. xii. 41.
Mr. Dyer on English Versification.
113 Or that of Milton...
and this line is quoted to shew, that the -Him th’ Almighty Power
obfervation of a Threwd modern wiiter is Hurl'd headlong Aaming from the ethereal not quite accurate, “ that to place thrée
long syllabks consecutively in English, is a With hideous ruin and combustion down great difficulty.' To bottomless perdition, &c.
The English Iambic alfo admits a Sometimes it is produced by a single Dactyl, that is, a foot of three fyllables, word, ulularunt, howi, hiss, roar, &c. with the first fyllable long, and the last
This is what Mr. Walsh very properly short, as in that line of Walleros, calls, the style of sound.
Cvăld or I děr teach ( ănd their | high pi:its This effect is produced by the applica | compose tion of the rule of the acute and grave
• High 1piríts”. accents; the acute making stronger, the And a Pyrrhic, that is, a foot of two grave weaker vibrations; from an artful short, as in the above verse, "ănd their.' management of the letters, confidered as It will also admit of an Anapæst, that liquids, consonants, fingle; or double, is a foot of three syllables, the two vowels, dipthongs, open vowels, &c. first short, and the last long; and of a From regarding the proper places for the Trochee, a foot of two fyllables, with pause, transposition, interrogation, &c. the first long, and last short; which the
I am not yet speaking of any parti- Greek Iambic never admitted: though cular species of versification, but of the it may be generally observed, the more effect of sound in general, in producing Iambics the verfe contains, it will be fo motion or passion. When the poet wilhes much the purer. to express, and to raise in the breast of With respect to long and short, it his reader, the softer or more lively paf- should be noticed, though English verse fions of love, hope, desire, &c. his verse is not regulated by position, it is not to Mould study correspondent movements; loose as to set aside quantity, it should be soft, and accompanied with
Sure there are poets who did never dream all the arts of infinuation ; it Thould move
Upon Parnassus, nor did taste the stream Sprightly, and with an air of triumph Of Helicon, &c. and exultation, &c.---on the other hand, when he would express grief, pride, re- be turned into an Iambic, as répūte, rå.
Suppose Poěts, which is a Trochee, to fentment, &c. the language Thould ex- plēte, and we shall see that the harmony press depression, indignation, sudden
is instantly broken ; or fuppofe Părnāftransition, &c. It is unnecessary to exemplify what has a foot of three fyllables, the first fyllable
lūs, which is an Amphibrachys, that is, been so frequently exemplified in books on rhetoric and poetry :---a few hints on read as an amphimacer, with each fylla
on each side short, the middle long, be the mechanical part of the different fpe- ble on the side long, and the middle cies of English versification, will be more short, we shall then likewise fee that the to the purpose of your correspondent L. The following rules feem to apply to
rules of quantity are violated, the Iambic, or Heroic, a verse of five
“On Parnăsfūs top, nor did taste the stream." fett, which may be wit
or without The next observation relates to the Thyme : called lambic, because the prin- Pause; a consideration of great importcipal foot contained in it is an Iambic, a
ance in verfe, και εςι λεξις κρατν τη foot of two fyllables, with the firit fyl- πασων, ητις αν εχοι αναπαυλας και μεJable short, the last long. Ex, of the tabulas aguonies *. The force of this Iambic with rhyme,
obfervation will be obvious by consiHěré thou | Grešt An nă, whô:n 1 thrēë dering what has already been noticed rĉilms obēy,
---the correspondence of poetry with Dóf some times coūnlēl tāke, I and fõmel music. Music requires variety of movetimes téa.
ments, no less than sweetness of found : I take these lines as affording an ex
and without this variety, both poetry ample of an inaccurate rhyme, which I and music will be accompanied with a Thall notice presently. At present, 'I ob difgufting monotony, ferve, that the last line is an example of
În Mr. Walth's "Letter to Mr.Pope," it perfect Iambic.
is observed, there is naturally a pause The Heroic or Iambic admits other at the fourth, fifth, or fixth fyllables. feet belides the Iambic. The first of
“ It is upon these the car refts, upon the these lines in the fourth place has taken a $pondee, or a foot of two long fyllables :
* Dionyf. Hal. Dę Struct. Orat. Q2