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INDEX TO VOLUME I., UNITED SERIES,

A.

FROM JANUARY TO APRIL, 1843.

125

203

481 512

202

354

252, 338

34 474

176

227

of Sciences; Paris, Population of 136-A Parallei 138-Pekin 430-Queen's College, Glasgow 284-Royal Society of Literature 136-Rome, Population of Ancient 139Roman remains 400-Sillometer 136-Sovereigns, the Three 138-Slave trade Treaty 285-Syria and Turkey 286-Shooting Stars 429-Victoria and Albert 286-Villainy 393-Vellum illuminated 400Wordsworth, Pension to 138-West India Mails 426-Southey; Avalanche; Copyright; Mount Etna; Autarctic Circle 570 Philanthropy and Fiddling 571.

O.

35 Obituary: Allen, Dr. Alexander 142—Bou101 langer, M. Clement 574-Callcott, Lady 573-Channing, Dr. 139-Cunningham, Allan; Darling, Grace 141-Daniel, Rev. E. J. 142-Drummond. Mr. 573-Hamilton, Thomas, Esq. 574-Hone, William 140Herschel, Dr. Solomon 142-Jovet, M. 574 -Paris Solitary 142-Sergeant Spankie

327 484

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139.

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Strutt's Calabria and Sicily,

Secret Communication in Ancient Armies 267 Science and Art: Animal Electricity 427Cameo; Comet 428-Composition of Blood; Curiosities 572-Electrical Machine 429Eclipse; French Scientific Congress; Fatty Animal Matter 427-Greek MSS.; McDowell 429; Microscope; Napoleon's Tomb 428-Optic 426-Pearly Nautilus 427 -Smoke consumed 428-Scientific Mission; Shooting Stars 429-Solar Eclipse; Splendid Meteor; Tartar on Teeth; Thermography 572.

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41 145 204

Macaulay's Lays of Ancient Rome, Miscellany: Ancient MSS. 137-Bricks, Machine 138-Crops, state of 136-Cornwall Superstitions 138-China, intercourse with; Chinese Guns 430-Document, Important, 285-Darling, Grace 287-Electrical Machine; Greek Manuscripts 429-Holman, Mr. 137-Joinville, Prince de 287-Lunar Rings 396-Meteoric Phenomena 136Matthew, Rev. Father; Marine Thermometer; Meat and Water for Sea Voyages 137 Musical Stones 287-Nile, Source of, 137 -Norbury, Murder of 285-Paris Academy

U.

United States, Prospect of, Unbelief, Credulity of,

W.

415

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537

72

160

245

343

393

497

349

396

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JOHN MARTIN.

PROBABLY of all the Artists who have ever lived, there are none so distinguished for originality as John Martin and Rembrandt van Ryn. Other great painters may have carried to perfection some quality or department of art, but their style or method did not originate with themselves, and the structure which their genius completed was already much advanced by less fortunate and gifted predecessors. This is true of Raffaelle, Michael Angelo and Correggio, whose transcendent powers were employed in the application and perfecting of principles, which had been gradually developed by the earlier Italians during the preceding centuries. But John Martin and the great Hollander are isolated in their glory, they have each produced that which had no prototype, and which other men will be proud to imitate, thus manifesting that high faculty which has been named Invention.

The qualities which have been assigned as the peculiarities of the late President of the Royal Academy, (Lawrence) and the chief cause of his almost universal popularity, are accomplishments which to him were absolutelyindispensable; but we see by the productions of Martin, that to a man of high genius they may be comparatively unimportant, for, with but mediocre talent in almost all the mechanical aids of art, excepting perspective, he has elevated himself to the very highest station among painters. That his pictures derive no aid from the charm of fine coloring, freedom of penciling, and the other graces of execution that are so captivating, is proved by the increased power of his designs when reduced to the mere black and white of Mezzotinto prints. The emanations of his mind seem to come upon us with a severer grandeur thus divested of mechanical adjuncts. Those who ridicule the ignorance of his admirers have been lavish in their praise of his engravings. But that which stirs great emotions within us, is nearly the same in the picture which they revile and the print which they admire; and they thus tacitly acknowledge that they have attended more to the mere imperfections of the setting, than the precious jewel it contained.

What most distinguishes Martin from other artists is, his power of depicting the vast, the magnificent, the terrible, the brilliant, the obscure, the supernatural, and sometimes, the beautiful. These are noble elements and are often used by him with a masterly hand. Who like him ever represented the immensity of space, or made architecture so sublime, merely through its vastness? what other has so piled mountain upon mountain to the sky, or shadowed forth the "darkness visible" of the infernal deeps? His genius is essentially epic, not dramatic. He can work with Homer or with Milton in presenting a great event with all its magnificent concurrents of physical sublimity, darkness and tempest; but he can do nothing with Shakspeare in embodying the fine philosophy and solemn musings of Hamlet. In attempting to mark in the countenance the workings of the heart he rarely, if ever, succeeds, but although deficient in the power of physiognomical expression, there is another species of expression in which he stands almost unrivalled-that by which every part of his picture is made, as it were in one grand harmony, to sound the chord of that emotion which is to it as the soul by which it lives: it is the convergence of every ray towards the one burning point; the bowing down of every subject-part before the throne of the one ruling sentiment. In this fine concord resides the real unity of a picture, and the work may thus possess its integrity unbroken, whilst out of its fractional parts might be formed a hundred pic

tures.

The overstrained, theatrical and exaggerrated attitudes observable in his figures, is perhaps a necessary consequence of their relative diminutiveness compared with the whole surface of the picture; for the sober truth of nature would, under the circumstances, appear but feeble and ineffective. The same necessity compels him also not unfrequently to give an entire group nearly the same action, and thus, by reiterating the lines, command the attention which a single figure could hardly obtain. The subject selected for the Eclectic Museum is less objectionable on this score than most of his works. The foreground group of Javan and Miriam, surrounded and relieved as it is by the gloomy solitude of the secret path, displays a sentiment and pathos unusual in the mere figures of this painter, and their value in the picture is still further enhanced by the remoteness of the Roman army, which is so subordinate as not to break in at all on this beautiful episode.

With all his faults then, and some of them are obvious, there can be no doubt that wherever grandeur of conception or pictorial greatness shall be fostered and cherished, there will be held in high and honorable estimation the name of JOHN MARTIN.

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