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* Thank God with all my soul and all my nature, my children have witnessed the harassing agonies under which I have ever painted ; and the very name of Painting - the very name of High Art —the very thought of a picture-gives them a hideous and disgusting taste in their mouths. Thank God, not one of my boys, nor my girl, can draw a straight line, even with a ruler, much less without

And I pray God, on my knees, with my forehead bent to the earth, and my lips to the dust, that He will in His mercy, afflict them with every other passion, appetite, or misery, with wretchedness, disease, insanity, or gabbling idiotism, rather than a longing for painting - that scorned miserable art — that greater imposture than —

the human species it imitates !'

Every day he painted worse and worse more hurriedly and heavily. He made small drawings, and hawked them about. Of his picture of Napoleon musing,' he painted not less than twenty-six small duplicates. He painted some portraits almost cursing his sitters. “Did all, as he says, “that in early youth • he had despised others for doing.' He begged, he borrowed : in the midst of his complaints of injustice no man ever received more kindness

more generous help. There is an outrageous letter to his excellent and forbearing landlord, Mr. Newton, which shows either absolute derangement, or that Haydon, as his biographer mildly expresses it, 'entertained very peculiar • notions of the relations of debtor and creditor,' and views quite different from those which usually prevail with regard to money obligations. He expresses in one place a conviction that his worldly troubles were sent direct from the Almighty, not only as trials to himself, but that by rousing attention they should interest the nation and excite a sympathy through the artist for his darling object.

In 1836 he was again in the King's Bench, again went through the Insolvent Court, and was discharged without opposition-once more legally free.

In 1839 he received a commission from the Corporation of Liverpool to paint the Duke of Wellington musing on the field of Waterloo. The pressure of public business prevented the Duke from sitting for this picture immediately; but in October the following year he invited Haydon down to Walmer Castle; and Ilaydon, proud and delighted, set to work, having already prepared his composition and studies with conscientious care. The journal of his few days at Walmer Castle is interesting, but too long for insertion. On this picture, also, Wordsworth wrote a fine sonnet. Haydon afterwards painted a picture of Wordsworth musing on Helvellyn, and sent the sketch to Miss Barrett (now Mrs. Browning); and she also crowned his work with a very beautiful sonnet. It cannot be said that Haydon was not glorified in his lifetime.

In 1840 he was called down to lecture at Oxford ; and gratefully he thanks God for allowing him the distinction of being the first to break down the barrier which had hitherto kept Art out of the pale of our Universities.'

In 1841 he had a commission to paint a large picture of the Anti-Slavery Convention, including portraits of the venerable Clarkson, of O'Connell

, and a great number of distinguished persons, English and American. It was of course a formal picture crowded with heads — no composition, no action. In portraits he did not excel; and our recollection of this picture in its progress, and afterwards is not pleasing - it did not please himself. He says, “The delight I had in turning to one of my historical pictures, after I had got rid of that dreadful collection of faces is not to be described !' The human face divine was always a trouble to Haydon when he could not do what he liked with it. It was remarked, that in both his pictures of Napoleon and Wellington he had turned away the face.

In his Journal at this time there is an account of a visit to Clarkson, which is extremely interesting, full of sensible remarks on others, mixed up, however, with almost frantic exaggeration as regards himself and his own claims and merits.

We must hurry on. It is sad to trace along these pages the gathering gloom — the breaking up of the very founda

tions of life and reason, the resistance of the will, the sinking of the spirit. When the Fine Arts Committee sat and examined witnesses Haydon was not even called. He felt it deeply. He set about making experiments in fresco, and followed them up with sanguine resolutions, though requiring a kind of practice and manipulation quite new to him. He records, with strong expressions of gratitude, the considerate kindness of Sir Charles Eastlake in helping him, with all his experience and knowledge. He rejoices that in advancing the cause of High Art, Sir Charles will follow in his footsteps with more temper ‘and prudence. While thus half hoping, half despairing, the death of his old friend Wilkie seems to have shaken him to the depths of his soul, disturbing him with wild painful thoughts and regretful memories. From this time there is scarcely a day without some allusion to 'poor dear Wilkie — poor fellow !

. When, in 1843, the prizes were announced for the best cartoons of historical subjects, Haydon had to compete against younger men, formed in the German and Paris schools of drawing. He was unsuccessful. The blow struck home; he seems to have staggered under it, through his whole being. It is evident


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that, when he went down to Westminster Hall to look at the Cartoons, the unwilling conviction was forced upon him that he was excelled. The suspicion that he was past doing great things came over him — a deep dejection followed. There are still flashes of hope — constant expression of trust in God — appeals to him against injustice — prayers for resignation to bear it; but he was a broken-hearted man. He had demanded, with a half-humorous, yet wild and passionate energy, to be allowed to do something, to have some little share in a triumph which, he believed, he had brought about. For thirty years he had been advocating the decoration of the House of Lords by native artists: he now asked, that when the Houses were ready, car'toons done, colours mixed, and all at their posts, he should be

allowed ---employed or not employed to take the first brush to * dip into the first colours, and put the first touch on the first intonaco. Otherwise he threatens to haunt them all — commissioners, architect, secretary--all!' He says, in another place, that he would have ground the colours for them rather than have been left out. But he was left out. Except in the hearts of one or two pitying friends, judgment and feeling were both against him.

Some of the entries into his Journal in these later years, when it became too evident that the harassed brain was giving way, have a sort of wild poetic spirit, which is extremely striking. We must extract one or two passages out of many. He thus laments over the necessities which had lowered his feeling for his own divine Art:

Art with me is becoming a beastly vulgarity. The solitary grandeur of historical painting is gone. There was something grand, something poetical, something touching, something inspiring, something heroic, something mysterious, something awful, in pacing your quiet painting-room after midnight, with a great work lifted up on a gigantic easel, glimmering by the trembling light of a solitary candle, “ when the whole world seemed adverse to desert.” There was something truly poetical in devoting yourself to what the vulgar dared not touch — holding converse with the Great Spirit — your heart swelling, your imagination burning, your being rising.'

Here is another lamentation to which we feelingly respond :

· Nov. 6. 1844.— Went to the National Gallery, and found the Rubens of Moses and the Brazen Serpent utterly ruined during the vacation; the whole of the tone and superb glazing rubbed off. It is one of his Italian pictures, painted at Genoa. What would Sir George and Sir Joshua say? They may talk as they please of the sufferings of humanity, but there is nothing so excites my sympathy as the helpless sufferings of a fine old picture of a great genius.


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Unable to speak or remonstrate, touching all hearts by its dumb beauty, appealing to all sympathies by its silent splendour, laid on its back, in spite of its lustrous and pathetic looks taken out of its frame, stripped of its splendid encasement, fixed to its rack to be scraped, skinned, burnt, and then varnished in mockery of its tortures, its lost purity, its beautiful harmony; and then hung up again for living envy to chuckle over, whilst the shade of the mighty dead is allowed to visit and rest about his former glory, as a pang for sins not yet atoned for!'

One of the last things he did (April and May, 1846) was to open an exhibition containing two large pictures designed as decorations for the House of Lords, according to the plan he had sent Lord Melbourne: Democracy, illustrated by the banishment of Aristides; and Despotism, by Nero, burning Rome, together with a great number of drawings and sketches. This exhibition failed completely and left him again overwhelmed with debt. We cannot dwell on the evident pressure of the brain which followed. If ever despair reigned in the human soul, it did in Haydon's. He describes himself sitting for hours before his canvas, palette in hand, doing nothing, staring on it • like an idiot:' or • flying at his work like an inspired devil.' He wrote to Sir Robert Peel and others of his patrons: Sir Robert was prompt and kindly in his reply, sending him 501. It came too late : anything, everything was too late. This was on the 16th of June. On the morning of the 22nd he was found dead in his painting-room at the foot of his easel. He had perished by his own hand.

Here we stop. There is no more to be said. Our impressions of Haydon's character as a man, of his merits and demerits as a painter, of the state in which he found, and the state in which he left the prospects of Art, of all that he achieved, of all in which he failed — may be gathered from the preceding pages. We now leave the reader to form his own conclusions; or if provoked to exasperation, or moved by a too painful pity, he find it difficult to hold the balance fairly, we refer him to the last pages of the biography, in which Mr. Taylor has ably and impartially summed up the pleadings for and against this remarkable and gifted man. He does not, perhaps, attach sufficient importance to the manifest presence of disease in accounting for so much that must otherwise remain unaccountable; but on the whole we concur in his estimate of the character. We confess to have ended this review in a gentler spirit than we began it. Haydon's faults were not undeservedly visited in this world; they brought down upon him their necessary inevitable consequences. But we are inclined to think that he has not

received justice for the higher qualities of his character - for the wonderful vigour and energy of his mind — the warmth, the truth, the tenacity of his affections; and we believe that this autobiography, from the general interest it has excited, will reverse, in some measure, the hard judgment that has been passed

upon him.


ART. IX.-1. Thoughts on the Subject of Bribery and Cor

ruption at Elections. By the Hon. G. F. S. ELLIOT. London:

1853. 2. A short and sure Way of preventing Bribery at Elections. By

RIGBY WASON, Esq. Ayr: 1853. 3. Is Bribery without a Remedy? A Letter to Lord John

Russell, &c. &c. By Sir J. EARDLEY WILMOT, Bart. Lon

don: 1853. 4. Suggestions for a Conservative and Popular Reform in the Commons House of Parliament. By AUGUSTUS G. STAPLE

London: 1853. 5. Parliamentary Reform; the Educational Franchise. London:

1853. 6. Reports and Minutes of Evidence taken before Election Com

mittees, -Rye, Chatham, Plymouth, Berwick, and others. 7. Remarks on Treating, and other Matters relating to the Election

of Members of Parliament. By P. A. PICKERING. London:

1852. IN N two previous Papers on Representative Reform (Jan.

and Oct. 1852), we endeavoured to prepare the way for practical action on this great question by a discussion of the main principles which lie at its foundation, and by an elimination of some popular fallacies which have extensively prevailed regarding it. We attempted to show that the subject was neither so simple nor so narrow as it had been represented; that some of its most important bearings and most difficult depart. ments had been hitherto singularly overlooked; and that even those branches of it which had been the object of the longest and most earnest consideration, had never been adequately expounded. We endeavoured also to arrive at a few indisputable conclusions, and to lay down a few ascertained positions, which might serve as a basis — a starting-point- for our legislators and statesmen, whenever they should seriously address themselves to the perilous and solemn task of adjusting or reconstructing the Representative element of our Parlia

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