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THE DIVISION OF ART
AT MARLBOROUGH HOUSE:
CATALOGUE OF THE PRINCIPAL WORKS,
CLASSIFIED FOR THE USE OF VISITORS TO THE LIBRARY.
PRINTED BY GEORGE E. EYRE AND WILLIAM SPOTTISWOODE,
FOR HER MAJESTY'S STATIONERY OFFICE.
LIBRARY OF THE DIVISION OF ART
I. THE library, consisting at present of about 5,000 volumes, and 100 portfolios of prints, drawings, &c., relating to decorative art and ornamental manufactures of every description, is now open daily, mornings and evenings, for the use of students, manufacturers, artizans, and the public in general, subject to the rules of the Department.
II. This library, though at present only in progress, is already sufficiently advanced to be of very great use to all those concerned in ornamental manufactures, or, indeed, graphic and plastic art generally, in any of their specialties or applications. to industry. It has, however, its special object, and is emphatically a special library; special in its contents, and peculiar in its administration: its object is to aid in every way the development of taste as applied to industrial art; and the peculiarity of its administration is, that it is made as accessible to the most illiterate as to the best informed.
III. The student or applicant has only to mention his business or his object in visiting the library, and the best of what it contains, relating to such business or object, will be placed before him: it is intended to be an Art Manufactures Library of the most comprehensive character practicable. The attention of manufacturers and skilled workmen generally is particularly invited to it, as it is organized for their especial use as the immediate agents in developing a correct taste among the public.
IV. In this age of national rivalries, assuredly those only will see their labours crowned with success who combine elegance with use. If, therefore, we may take it for granted that the essential value of the refinements of art is established beyond question, it behoves all those professing such occupations as are involved in supplying these public wants, to make every effort to attain the utmost possible efficiency, which is quite as essential to personal as to national success.
V. An illustrated library is a means of aiding this end that has been hitherto almost overlooked; yet except a special Museum of actual manufactures, there can be no more direct agent for conveying palpable ideas to the mind of the artizan: but while the Museum is necessarily extremely limited in many respects, the library is in a measure infinite: a single volume might contain more illustrations, in any one department of art, ranging easily over all ages from the most remote down to the present day, than it would be possible to collect together in any one place at present.
VI. Great and various is the toil that the skilful and industrious artist might have been spared if he had had easy access to a comprehensive and practical illustrated library. Slow and arduous steps might have yielded to a rapid and enlarged development of ideas only faintly defined to the mind of the artist himself; and many an imagined novelty which has cost its author an infinite amount of pains and anxiety, might have been entertained for a transient moment only, and dismissed to the merited