The artists repository and drawing magazine: exhibiting the principles of the polite arts in their various branches — 4.1790

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i fuch as would naturally arife from the fubject, fo that on
examination of any one expreffion, it ihould appear the
immediate offspring of the principal action ; as all rhe
expreffions united, Ihould the more flrongly, becaufe
of their variety, enforce the principal idea of the piece.
Such fubjects are always fufflciently fertile in them-
felves, without needing afliftance from epifodes of any
kind. The variation of attitudes, of characters, of
groups, may freely be confulted, yet always witn a view
to the unity of action, never admitting figures to let,
ufelefs circumftances, or any difiracting caufe what-

Unity of place is not lefs neceffary. A painter is not
at liberty to vary, or fuppofe the fcene at his fancy ;
nor to reprefent in a landfcape, what the hiftory
relates as paffing in an apartment. Add to this, that
having introduced a vellibule, or apartment, he ought
by all means to avoid objects which might attract the
eye out of it. In fact, character and propriety muffc
^regulate the whole : even the decoration of his compo-
fitions is not left to his caprice ; a hut, a cottage,
admit not of colonnades, or gilded turrets : nor is it fit
that a royal palace fhould feem the dwelling of boors,
or appear equally littered and difordered as a mews.

In every compofition fome figures are more important
than others ; fome are principals, others fubordinates :
every object ought to be treated and diftinguifhecl
according to its neceflity and importance ; in corre-
fpon'dence to which, it is fuppofed to raife an interefl in
the fpectator; but it would be an exceedingly vicious
extreme to enforce this diftmction too rigidly : it would

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