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be no argument, if the sense of the word is extended to every thing that is approved. A rose may as well be said to be beautiful, because it has a fine smell, as a bird because of its colour. When we apply the word Beauty, we do not mean always by it a more beautiful form, but something valuable on account of its rarity, usefulness, colour, or any other property. A horse is said to be a beautiful animal ; but had a horse as few good qualities as a tortoise, I do not imagine that he would then be deemed beautiful.
A fitness to the end proposed, is said to be another cause of beauty; but supposing we were proper judges of what form is the most proper in an animal to constitute strength or swiftness, we always determine concerning its beauty, before we exert our understanding to judge of its fitness.
From what has been said, it may be inferred, that the works of Nature, if we compare one species with another, are all equally beautiful, and that preference is given from custom or some association of ideas; and that, in creatures of the same species, beauty is the medium or centre of all its various forms.
To conclude, then, by way of corollary: if it has been proved that the Painter, by attending to the invariable and general ideas of Nature, produce beauty, he must, by regarding minute particularities, and accidental discriminations, deviate from the universal rule, and pollute his canvass with deformity.
FLANDERS AND HOLLAND,
IN THE YEAR MDCCLXXXI.*
Ar Ostend, where we landed, July 27. 1781, there are no pictures, and even Bruges affords but a scanty entertainment to a Painter : however, there are a few,
* Our author, accompanied by Philip Metcalfe, Esq. left London on Tuesday, July 24. 1781, went to Margate, and embarked there for Ostend ; proceeded from thence to Ghent, Brussels, Antwerp; Dort, the Hague, Leyden, Amsterdam, Dusseldorp, Aix-la-Chapelle, Liege; returned to Brussels again, from thence to Ostend ; landed at Margate, and arrived in London, Sunday, Sept. 16.
To Mr. Metcalfe he intended to have dedicated his account of this Tour, but he had only written the following introductory paragraphs :
“ I send you, put together in as much order as the little time I can spare from my business will permit, the Notes that I made abroad on the pictures that we saw together. I present them to you as properly your due ; for if I had been accompanied by a person of less taste, or less politeness, they probably would not have been made. The pleasure that a mere dilettante derives from seeing the works of art, ceases when he has received the full effect of each performance; but the Painter has the means of amusing himself much longer, by investigating the principles on which the Artists wrought. To whichever of your good qualities I am to attribute your long and patient attendance, while I was employed in examining the various works which we saw, it merits