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kind of lover's ardour for his mistress; but are we, on that account, to turn political Quixotes, and force from those ignorant of her charms, acknowledgments of our Dulcinea's transcendent beauties?
The bulk of the Portuguese nation are undeniably opposed to the Charter, and they have, unquestionably, as much right to choose despotism for their country as we have to choose liberty for ours; nor have we more right to force the latter upon them, than they have to force the former upon us. But this question will soon, we expect, be set at rest. However despicable the agents, a Revolution has obviously been effected in Portugal, and the King de facto, after decent delays, will, we imagine, be generally acknowledged.
Whatever may be the case, far froin our towering credit on the continent being diminished by our conduct regarding Portugal, Europe will behold with applause the moderation which we have substituted where tyranny was even demanded from us. Our noble character as a nation, equally immoveable from our firm course either by the temptations of advantage or by the aspect of peril, will be confirmed. The people who have so long been our allies, we pity, because we believe that they have chosen a line that is likely to prove baneful, when they might have selected that which would have proved beneficial. But, for ourselves, we have nothing to regret : we have done our duty, and may look back with calm satisfaction on our pursuit of perfect rectitude towards that country.
From the affairs of Portugal, Mr. Gally Knight proceeds to the affairs of Greece, and this latter part of his pamphlet is quite contradictory to that which has preceded. Finding his previous machinery of polluted justice,' 'real patriots, breaking chains,' and so forth, cumbersome and obstructive, he takes leave of such allies, and, to our astonishment, assumes at once the impregnable position that the laws of nations must not be violated even in the name of liberty! p. 30. Why, if this fact had struck Mr. Knight at page 1 instead of page 30, he might have been saved the trouble of his remarks on the Portuguese question, the whole mystery of which is unravelled by this simple admission. Mr. Knight, however, is not to be stopped by any such trifle ; but, getting bolder as he advances, he, in the next place, finds fault with us for not ordering the combined fleet from Navarino up to Constantinople? A thing very easily said, but not very easily done, to say nothing of the impolicy of the measure, and keeping quite out of view its tyranny and injustice; which latter argument is, by the bye, throughout set at nought, when it opposes the views of this champion of liberalism. But let us advance with Mr. Knight, who, in page 32, tells us, that from the moment of the change of administration in England, the Greek question seemed to be odious !' Now, Mr. Knight's dislike of our administration, has here carried him a little too far: a very little prudence would have taught him
to touch lightly on the tender ground of the Greek question; a very little reflection would have taught him to whom is due the odium of the stock-jobbing transaction, which goes by that venerable name. The conduct of our ministers has been much more liberal with regard to Greece, than she had any right to expect: would that "the friends of Greece" had been as attentive to her interests.
Mr. Gally Knight's complaints consist of reproaching our ministers for raisiog the blockade of Candia, and of telling us that we have humbled ourselves before the footstool of the proud barbarian.' The latter expression somewhat puzzled us, but the next line explains that this is merely a metaphorical method of expressing 'the embassy,' which, in conjunction with France, we sent to the Ottoman Porte. Is Mr. Gally Knight wise in thus showing that his antipathy to our ministers is so bitter, that he cannot even mention a simple fact, without so couching it as to give it an air of crimination ? "With regard to Candia, we were the mediators between Turkey and Greece, and the same policy which led us to blockade at Navarino the Turks who attempted to molest the Greeks, led us at Candia to restrain the Greeks who attempted to molest the Turks. Can any thing be more simple ? Were not the two cases exactly parallel ? Yet Mr. Knight approves of the affair at
Navarino, and condemns our interference with Candia. No one To will be at a loss to discover his reasons ; but it would have been
well for Mr. Knight, had he thought of the passage from Quintilian, which Sir James Wedderburn has so happily prefixed as a motto to his reply—“Modeste tamen et circumspecto de tantis viris pronunciandum est, ne quid plerisque accedit, damnent quod non intelligunt."
But the climax of Mr. Knight's policy yet remains to be considered. Will it be believed that, as a remedy for the diseases of the East, he calmly proposes to permit Russia to occupy European Turkey, and expel the Ottoman dynasty? Yet such is the purport
of the last part of his letter : and the principal advantage held out hy is the superior enlightenment which would shine on the inhabitants 1. when under the sway of Russia! Here is liberalism with a ven* geance. This part of Mr. Knight's letter we bardly know how to
take hold of; it is like a soap-bubble, and bursts wherever it is 1. handled. His position is, that Russia is at present unwieldy from
her size, and he assumes that therefore the larger she is, the weaker 1 she will become. Now in the first clause we coincide, but the latter * We think a clear non sequitur. Let Russia, instead of her miserable
ports on the Euxine, frozen up during several months, and situated
on a sea less fitted than any other for the purposes of navigation1, instead of these, let her but possess the ports of Turkey, and her
bulk, instead of being cumbersome, becomes invaluable : her posmy session of Turkey would not only add to her already over-grown Te territory, a state full of resources which can furnish immense armies, bi but it would call into action the inert mass of extensive provinces that are at present without weight in the political balance. Such an accession would render the power of Russia really tremendous. Mr. Knight, in pursuit of his plan of enlightening Turkey, and encumbering Russia with additional territory, elegantly writes of • Odessa advanced to Constantinople;' and upon the same principle would, we suppose, like to see her still further crippled by the possession of British India, or, perhaps, by having St. Petersburglu 'advanced' to Calais. Our statesmen, however, are so bold as to differ from Mr. Knight in this opinion. Mr. Canning thought, and acted too, on a contrary principle. This minister, whose sagacity is undeniable, we believe frequently made use of reasons, by which he was not himself actuated, to persuade to a particular line of conduct, men who could not be influenced by what to himself carried conviction ; and we think, that the treaty of July, 1827, is a proof that the affairs of Greece formed such an instance, where by arguments of liberalism,-i.e. of interference to free one set of barbarians from the sway of another set of barbarians, for the sake of “classical associations,” &c.,—he obtained acquiescence from those who would have thought of their purses, had he proposed at once to pronzise for the future security of their country, by resisting the advance of Russia. It must be obvious to all men, that a triple alliance had as much right to interfere in the government of Ireland as in the government of Greece; and by such a sense have the present ministry been actuated. Russia has receded, as her monarch asserted that she should, her end being attained ; a contrary conduct would have united all Europe in opposition to her. And shall we ourselves attempt the interference which we will not permit to others ? Let us be the arbitrators, but not the bullies of Europe. If Greece be ultimately erected into a monarchy, with the Prince Leopold for its first sovereign, that will be the work of Russia, France, and England, not of England alone. The motives of such a measure will be found in the many advantages which it would afford to the whole community of Europe, and not to any nation in particular.
We now take leave of Mr. Gally Knight, whom we should not have noticed at such length bad we not understood that he was regarded as an oracle by many of his party, and declared unanswerable by some of the public prints. The declamatory style in which his letter is written, is, we are convinced, the only reason why it has been able to attain any degree of popularity; nor do we wish to detract from whatever credit may be due to this portion of his performance. But as far as his facts, or reasonings are concerned, we must withhold from Mr. Gally Knight our approbation.
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der. V.- Lectures on Sculpture. By John Flaxman, Esq. R.A. 1 vol..
royal 8vo. pp. 339. Numerous Plates. London: John Murray. 1829. A COUNTRY squire, who had been appointed a magistrate during the sway of Oliver Cromwell, applied to Sir Matthew Hale to instruct him in what mariner he ought to perform the duties of his office. “Always decide," said the shrewd Chief Justice, “ without assigning any reason for your decision; for if you hunt after reasons, you may be almost certain of going wrong, while you have some chance of being right if you avoid arguing.” This we take to be not only a sound, but a very profound advice, applicable to by far the greater number of professional men, who take upon themselves the duties of instructors; and a more marked instance of the neglect of such advice, could not easily be pointed out than the Lectures of Mr. Flaxman on Sculpture. That the author could conceive and execute statues of great classical beauty, is universally acknowledged ; that he could embody in stone the finer affections of human nature, is proved in his “Good Samaritan;" that he could even rise to the sublime, appears in his monument to the family of Sir Francis Baring, in Micheldever Church, Hants -but for none of these performances could he render a reason, nor give a single glimpse to the young aspirants of the Royal Academy of his method of proceeding, that they might profit thereby in their own studies. These “ Lectures,” indeed, in which the editor tells us ' he has been particularly cautious of making any alterations, lest, in the endeavour to give a smoother turn to a sentence, the sense and spirit of it should be injured,' demonstrate in a very striking manner the absurdity of attempting instruction upon such a system. We are quite certain, indeed, that none of his hearers, and none of his readers, can possibly, make the slightest improvement in the art of sculpture by what is here told them, though it is highly probable, if, like the editor, they have “a sacred value for every idea and every word of the author,” that they may be led woefully astray. This may by many be looked upon as too sweeping a condemnation ; but we cannot consent to modify what we shall abundantly prove before we have done. . We can scarcely bring ourselves to believe that so many absurdities should find their way into elementary precepts, and even into philosophic criticism, as are so frequently met with, and we have seen these no where so obtrusively glaring as in Mr. Flaxman's Lectures. Should a painting, for instance, or a statue, obtain the credit of being a masterpiece, it is forthwith made the standard of beauty, and they even set about measuring its proportions, that the young artist may learn bis profession by rule and compass, on a principle as preposterous as that on which he would proceed who attempts to compose an epic poem by a steam-engine. Such and the same we esteem the folly of striving to teach young artists
grace, symmetry, and beauty, by ascertaining the proportions of the antique statues. The pupils are, when this is practised, deceived into a wrong course at the outset, and they can seldom afterwards recover the legitimate path by retracing their steps. This absurdity, however, has been carried so far, that tables have actually been drawn up of the feet, inches, and parts of an inch, necessary to be observed by every painter and every statuary, in embodying his conceptions of human beauty--the Venus de Medicis being usually taken as the standard of female, and the Apollo Belvidere of male, elegance of form. Mr. Flaxman has thought proper to introduce such a proportional table, employing (after Vitruvius) the head as the standard of measurement.
• From the os pubis to the top of the head one half, from the same point to the sole of the fuot the other half.
There are three equal divisions from the acromion of the scapula to the bottom of the inner ankle:
* First from the acromion to the point in the spine of the ilinm, from which the rectus and sartorius muscles begin. . • Second, from thence to the top of the patella.
* Third, from the top of the patella to the bottom of the inner ankle.
• From the bottom of the pubis to the bottom of the patella is the same length as from the bottom of the patella to the sole of the foot, two heads each ; but, we must observe, the ancients generally allowed half a nose or more to the length of the lower limbs, exceeding the length of the body and head.
....1 head and I nose, or 5 noses.
Breadth of the Thigh.
Length of the Arm.
Wrist ............. 1 nose. • The female figure should not be so tall as the male; the shoulders and loins should be narrower, and the hips broader.'-pp. 130—132.
Now, though we admit that these are excellent proportions, and also that the Venus exhibits the most exquisite symmetry of the