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THE R E V. G. N. WRIGHT, M. A.
FISHER, SON, & CO.,
RUE ST. HONORÉ, PARIS.
GREECE excelled in the Statuary's art-Italy was pre-eminent in the Painter's: but it was reserved for England to surpass all other nations in bringing to perfection the practice of Engraving. This triumph is perhaps less due to the force of ancient example, to princes' patronage, or to original talent, than to that perseverance and unwearied industry which have long characterized the British people.
During many years, the Proprietors of the Caxton Press devoted their energies to the production of Illustrated Works of high character, as regarded literature and art; and their vast store of authentic Engravings, representing the most picturesque objects in many lands—delineating some of the most remarkable events in history-and exhibiting faithful likenesses of our most celebrated Soldiers, Statesmen, and Scholars, at length accumulated to an unprecedented extent.
Selecting from this rich treasury, without any reservation on account of extreme rarity or conspicuous merit, and actuated as much by public principles as by private profit, they have embodied in one continuous work the best performances of British artists, constituting a Gallery more justly entitled to the name of National than any that has ever preceded it.
Its scenic subjects are from the heads and the hands of Turner, Stanfield, Wilkie, Allom, Roberts, &c. ; its portrait and historical, of Lawrence, Opie, Pickersgill; its imaginative, of Parris, Maclise, Chalons, Hayter, Stephanoff.
Being sustained in his exertions by contributors, the most valued amongst the lettered ones of the age, the Editor commenced his labours with the gratifying prospect, as he imagined, of some literary fame. In this he has been disappointed, for, when his name became surrounded by those of L. E. L., Mary Howitt, Bernard Barton, and T. Dale, &c., to which a happy accident has added that of John Howden,* he felt that the original building had sunk, while the beautiful buttresses that were to have supported it, alone survived.
Mr. Howden is author of a metrical translation of the Danaë of Simonides, a lyric so full of power, pathos, and poetry, that it deserves to be placed beside Wolfe's ever-memorable ballad on the death of Sir John Moore.
LIST OF PLATES, AND CONTENTS.-VOL. I.