Anecdotes of Painting in England: With Some Account of the Principal Artists - Vol. 3

By Horace Walpole | Go to book overview

voyages. The garden is in the Italian taste, but divested of conceits, and far preferable to every style that reigned till our late improvements. The buildings are heavy, and not equal to the purity of the house. The lavish quantity of urns and sculpture behind the garden-front should be retrenched.

Other works designed by Lord Burlington were, the dormitory at Westminster-school, the Assembly-room at York, 1 Lord Harrington's 2 at Petersham, the Duke of Richmond's house at Whitehall, and General Wade's in Cork- street. Both the latter were ill-contrived and inconvenient; but the latter has so beautiful a front, that Lord Chesterfield said, As the general could not live in it to his ease, he had better take a house over against it and look at it. These are mere details relating to this illustrious person's works. 3 His genuine praise is better secured in Mr. Pope's epistle to him.

I ought not to omit that his countess, Lady Dorothy Saville, had no less attachment to the arts than her lord. She drew in crayons, and succeeded admirably in likenesses; but, working with too much rapidity, did not do justice to her genius. She had an uncommon talent too for caricatura.


WILLIAM KENT,

(1684—1748.)

Under the auspices of Lord Burlington and Lord Pembroke, architecture, as I have said, recovered its genuine lustre. The former, the Apollo of arts, found a proper priest in the person of Mr. Kent. As I mean no panegyric on any man beyond what he deserved, or what to the best of my possibly erroneous judgment I think he deserved, I

____________________
1
Sections and plans of this grand apartment are given in Drake's Eboracum, fol.—D.
2
The octagon buildings at each end were afterwards added by Sheperd.
3
Lord Burlington being consulted by the citizens for a proper person to carve the bas-relief in the pediment of the Mansion-house, his lordship replied, Anybody could do well enough for such a building.

The fact was, that the architect, G. Dance, who was the city surveyor, had been preferred to Kent. But Dance afterwards proved that he had an excellent idea of what was required in the construction of a gaol, by his appropriate building of Newgate.-D.

-56-

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