Imágenes de páginas



One Effect from apparently many Causes.......



Sensations ministering to Beauty,.....



Intellections ministering to Beauty. - I. Truth. II. Resemblance.

III. Power. 1V. Utility. V. Unity. VI. Proportion........ 43


Of Beauty Derived from Emotions which are more marked than

their Intellectual Antecedents.- II. Of the Risible. III. Art-

istic Use of Mirth. IV. Humor. V. Grave Emotions.

VI. Use of Sublimity in Art, .......



Association and Combination of Feelings.......



Harmony of Emotion in a Work,.......



Of the Picturesque...........







The design of the following treatise is to draw a line around that portion of philosophy which pertains to Art, indicating the main sources of the wealth which it contains, and the limits which its cultivators have assigned to themselves.

Human nature is a border land where two great empires meet—that of matter on the one hand, and of mind on the other. Partaking of both, we fluctuate between the two. Essentially invisible spirits, as truly belonging to the unseen now as we shall when the mortal frame is laid aside, we yet have no means of intercommunication, except through matter. What eye ever beheld that being who understands and reasons, and desires and fears ? We look upon the signs, and listen to the words he employs, and the body he animates stands before us; but himself is as intangible to all our senses as the inhabitants of heaven. And yet we have the most elaborate animal structure to maintain, and all the wants of animals to meet, to even a greater extent than is common with them.

Human nature is thus involved in a struggle which is two-fold. One pertaining to time, another to eternity; one to comfort here, another to blessedness hereafter; one to the wellbeing of the body, another to the satisfaction of the mind : and, in view of both, it is affected with hopes and fears, pleasures and pains. Now, that region of pleasure, in contemplation alike of the present and the future, is the department of human experience to which the Philosophy of Art is addressed.

To those who deem the provision of material sustenance the highest service that man can perform for his fellow-man, all discussion of this kind must appear an affair of no practical value-a mere waste of words. If, when he had eaten, and drunk, and found clothing, and a comfortable place to dwell in, man could repose in perfect gratification of all the requirements of his nature; if even in the lowliest vale of poverty, he did not feel more urgent wants than hunger and thirst, such materialistic views might be correct; but the domination of the spirit over the body being in man such as it is-prompting, restraining, and controlling, in myriads of cases to the utter disregard of material ease, and frequently to the denial of every bodily gratification, and the very destruction of the mortal frame he must be poorly acquainted with his race who conceives that it can be adequately provided for after the manner of domestic cattle. What is honor, for example, but one of those dreams, as he calls them? It can not feed a man, nor clothe him, nor make a blade of grass grow, yet for that same intangibility thousands and tens of thousands have sacrificed every material consideration, and even life itself. For some gratification of taste, for the exercise and development of their intellectual powers, what privations have not men submitted to, and those the very last of their race whom it would be proper to call foolish or visionary. If it would be cruel to ridicule the complaints of hunger in the destitute of daily food, still more so is the contempt which the materialist inflicts upon the craving spirit: inasmuch as the body, at the worst, can only die and have its calls silenced in the

grave, but the unhealed ailments of the soul are everlasting, and must be augmented by duration. This fact, it is true, assumes the highest importance in relation to the moral element of humanity, but it also belongs in some degree to every faculty of the immortal nature.

Aspirations after truth and beauty, the work of imagination and of reason, as well as of conscience, occupy a large portion of the existence of every human being, and the larger in proportion as the individual is stronger and better; and for eminence therein do men especially choose to hold each other in honor. But for them, indeed, we should have no natural intimation of our superior destiny. If there was nothing in man that led him to desire the spiritual and unseen, he could have no internal assurance of an interest in such things, and most rationally should he, like other brutes, content himself with material existence, and go down to death as hopelessly as they. Those very features of our nature which rise above all temporal utility, and whose products are generally treated with such contemptuous neglect by the political economist, are the stamp of our superiority, the surest mark of the immortal.

Art, in itself considered, is neither moral nor immoral. It belongs to an entirely separate class of things. But its associations are inevitably, in many cases, either for or against the right. And a conviction that intrinsically, and

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