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the picture of the release of St. Peter, sepulchre, from models supplied by.. the artist alludes to the imprisonment Raphael. One of these was the statue of the Pope Leo X. at Ravanna, and his “ Jonah," worthy of being classed with subsequent liberation.
the productions of ancient art. Our L'Incendio del Borgo depicts a fire artist adorned the Loggie of the Vatican in that quarter of Rome, which occured with a set of compositions from Old in the reign of Leo IV., and was said to Testament history, entitled “Raphael's have been extinguished by a superna- Bible.” “The Loggie are open galtural interposition. “This wonderful leries, running round three sides of an piece alternately chills the heart with open court." The construction of these terror, or warms it with compassion. galleries had been commenced by The calamity of fire is carried to its Bramante, but he had not been able to extreme point, as it is the hour of mid-complete the design. They were connight, and the fire which already occu- sequently finished by Raphael, with the pies a considerable space, is increased | addition of great improvements upon by a violent wind, which agitates the the original plan. The painter thus flames that leap with rapidity from afforded a new specimen of his skill as house to house. T'he affright and misery an architect, with which Leo X. was of some of the inhabitants are also car- well pleased. The direction of the inried to the utmost extremity. Some terior decorations were also entrusted rush forward with water, are driven to Raphael. “This afforded the artist back by scorching flames; others seek an opportunity of displaying his knowsafety in flight, with naked feet, robe-ledge of the antique, and his skill in less and with dishevelled hair ; women imitating the ancient grotesque and are seen turning an imploring look to arabesque ornaments, specimens of the pontiff'; mothers whose own terrors which then began to be discovered, as are absorbed in fear for their offspring; well in Italy as in other places, and and here a youth who bearing on his which were collected from all parts at shoulders his aged and infirm sire, and considerable expense by Raffaello, who sinking beneath the weight, collects his also employed artists in various parts of almost exhausted strength to place him Italy, even in Greece and Turkey, to out of danger.”
furnish him with drawings of whatever The last chamber painted by Raphael remains of antiquity might appear de. in the Vatican was called the Hall of serving of notice. The execution of Constantine, being illustrative of the this great work was chiefly entrusted to career of that Emperor. The frescoes two of his scholars, Giulio Romano, in this series were executed by pupils and Giovanni da Udine; the former of from the artist's designs, as he had so whom superintended the historical demany important undertakings under partment, the latter the stucco and grohis superintendence, that it was utterly tesques, in the representation and exqui. impossible for him to complete them all site finish of which he excelled all the with his own hands. Hence he merely artists of his time, but various other furnished the cartoons from which his artists who had already arrived at conscholars worked.
siderable eminence were employed in In the mean time Raphael painted the work, and laboured with great assi. several pictures for his munificent duity. Among these were Giovanni patron, “Agostino Chigi, consisting Francesco Penni, Bartolomeo da Bagchiefly of fresco decorations for his nacavallo, Perino del Vaga, Pellegrino palace in the Transtevere, now called the da Modena, and Vincenzio da S. GeVilla Farnesina ; among which may be mignano. ....... The great extent mentioned a series representing the his- and variety of this undertaking, the tory of Cupid and Psyche, still in excel- fertility of imagination displayed by lent preservation. Our artist possessed Raffaello in his designs, the condescenalso considerable architectural talent, sion and kindness with which he for he furnished Agostino with the de-treated his pupils who attended him in sign of a private Chapel, and also en-great numbers whenever he appeared gaged to superintend the erection of a in public, and the liberality of the magnificent mausoleum, which his pa- pontiff in rewarding their labours, all tron was desirous of having built in his combined to render the Vatican at that life-time. A. sculptor, named Lorenzetto, period a perfect nursery of art." executed two marble figures for this. There is an interesting story related
of one of the boys employed there, in Sisto," and represents the infant Christ grinding colours, and carrying the com- enthroned in the arms of the Virgin, position of lime and other artistic re- St. Sixtus and St. Barbara kneeling in quisites. From hearing the conversa- adoration on each side. tions of the painters, and continually When Bramante died, in 1514, the living in sight of the glorious creations office of Superintendent of the building of genius, this youth acquired a deep of St. Peter's was rendered vacant, and love of painting, and a burning desire consequently a competition for the to devote his life to the art, that he too appointment took place between the might leave behind him some such fair architects of Rome, among whom were memorials. Thought and observation Raphael, Fra Gioconda, and Peruzzi. were his only means of study, for he In compliance with the last request of never practiseil painting until he was the dying Bramante, Leo installed eighteen years of age, when all at once Raphael in the vacant office, with Giohe "seized the pencil and astonished conda for his assistant. his employers." And from that time. The artist was very much interested Polidoro da Caravaggio was numbered in the discovery and preservation of in the ranks of the disciples of Raphael. I all the art remains of antiquity. Ho
After the artist had completed the de- formed a plan for excavating the whole corations of the Loggie he was employed of ancient Rome, for the purpose of disto embellish one of the saloons of the interring all such treasures. He wished Vatican in the same manner. Leo X. also to make an "accurate survey of determined also to have the lower walls the city, with representations of all the of the Capella Sistina hung round with remains of ancient buildings, so as to costly tapestry, to be woven in Flanders, obtain, from what might yet be seen, a in wool, and silk, and gold. He de- complete draught or model of the whole sired Raphael to furnish the designs for as it existed in the most splendid era of this work, from different portions of its prosperity.” A letter on this subject Scripture history. The cartoons were which he addressed to the reigning accordingly executed, and forwarded to pontiff is still in existence. He comFlanders, where they were suffered to mences :-" There are many persons, remain after the completion of the holy father, who estimating great tapesty, until the reign of Charles the things by their own narrow judgment, First, who had the good taste to pur esteem the military exploits of the anchase them. They are now at Hampton cient Romans, and the skill which they Court, and familiar to us all. Originally have displayed in their buildings, so they were ton in number, but three, spacious and so richly ornamented, as unfortunately, have been lost. The rather fabulous than true. With me, tapestries wore finished at Arras, and however, it is widely different; for when sent to Rome, in 1519. Raphael had I perceive in what yet remains of Rome the pleasure of seeing them disposed in the divinity of mind which the ancients their places, amid much admiring ap- possessed, it seems to me not unreasonplause on the part of the spectators. able to conclude, that many things were Several sets of hangings were worked to them easy, which to us appear imfrom the same cartoons, and of these possible. Having therefore, under this one set was presented to llenry VIII. conviction, always been studious of the of England, and afterwards sold out of remains of antiquity, and having with the kingdom.
no small labour investigated, and accuIt is said that Francis I. of France, rately measured such as have occurred and the King of England were both to me, and compared them with the anxious to engage the services of writings of the best authors on this Raphael as Court painter, but they subject, I conceive that I have obtained were equally unsuccessful. The artist some acquaintance with the architecpainted for the French Monarch a ture of the ancients. This acquisition, * Holy Family," and the beautiful while it gives me great pleasure, has picture of “ St. Michael overcoming the also affected me with no small concern, Dragon," for which production he was in observing the inanimate remains as most magnificently rewarded. One of it were of this noble city, the queen of Raphael's finest works was executed the universe, thus lacerated and disfor the convent of St. Sixtus, at Piacenza persed. As there is a duty from every -it is called the “Madonna di San child towards his parents and country, so I find myself called upon to exert psal serres, horerer, to show in what what little ability I possess, in perphyh estimation he was held. But the tuating somewhat of the image or lo so bright and beautiful was not rather the shadow, ot that which is destined to prore of long duration. in fact, the universal country of all Raphael's last and greatest produeChristians, and at one time was so eletion was the grand picture of the "TransFated and so powerful that mankind i liguration," which he undertook at the began to believe that it was raial desire of the Cantinal de Medici, Archbevond the efforts of fortune, and des bishop of Narbonne. It was designed tined to perpetual duration. Hence it for the altur-piece of the Cathedral of would seem that Tim, enrions of the Narbonne. It that time there were glory of' mortals, but not fully contiling two parties in Rome, one in favour of in his own strengh had combined with Vichael Angelo, and the other adhering fortune, and with the protane and into Raphael - not that there was ever sparing barbarians, that to his corroding any opel rivalry between these two file and consuming tooth they might ad great artists. The stern and laughty their destructive fury; and by tires, br Florentine was still eridently anxious sword, and every other mode of devasta not to be outdone. He, therefore, emtion might complete the ruin of Reme." | ploved a Venetian painter, named Se
The artist then proceeds to lamentbastian del l'iombo, to invest luis own the indifference and neglect with which energetic desigus with the graces of atthe modern Romans had treated these tractive and brilliant colouring. Whilst noble monuments of their former glory, Raphael was engaged upon the "Transsuffering them to be left to ruin and tiguration," Sebastian commenced his decay, or even with sacrilegious hand, celebrated picture of the “Raising of employing them in the construction Lazarus," for which it was generally of their dwellings. He adds--" It ought understood that Buonaroti not only not, therefore, holy father, to be the supplied the cartoon, but sketched some last object of your attention, to take of the tigures upon the panel. The rival care that the little which now remains pictures were afterwards exhibited toge. of this, the ancient mother of Italian ther in the chambers of the Consistory, glory and magnificence, be not, by means and although the work of the Venetian of the ignorant and the malicious, obtained due praise the palm was unaniwholly extirpated and destroyed; but mously awarded to that of Raphael. may be preserved as a testimony of the This chef d'eurre is divided into two worth and excellence of those divine parts. The lower represents a demoniac minds, by whose example we of the brought for cure to the Redeemer's dispresent day are incited to great and ciples, by his distressed friends. The laudable undertakings."
upper portion displays Mount Tabor ; Raphael was justly distinguished for and the transfigured Christ above, bright the excellence of his portraits, which with ideal grace, and divino in majosty, were, of course, earnestly sought after. Moses and Elias on each side, and the Among the most striking are those of three disciples prostrate on the ground, Bindo Altoviti, of Joanna of Aragon, shading their eyes from the dazzling of Leo X., with the Cardinals Rossi, light of the ineffable glory. But before and Giulio de Medici, and the picture the artist had quite completed this of " La Fornarina," supposed to be the dream of beauty, death intervened, and portrait of a beautiful Roman girl, to Raffaello Sanzio, the world-renowned, whom the artist was attached.
" il divin pittore," died on the anniverAt this period we behold Raphael at sary of his birth-day, Good Friday, 1520, the very summit of his greatness and at the comparatively early age of thirty. felicity, living in the midst of splendour seven years. “During his illness, the and of luxury; the companion and the Pope had sent to his residence daily, friend of princes; beloved by his dis- with the kindest inquiries; and he ciples, esteemed and admired by all. I joined in the universal sorrow, when it The Cardinal Bibbiena offered him his was announced that the beloved artist niece in marriage, with a rich dowry; was no more. The mortal remains of but the lady's death took place before Raphael were laid in state, in his studio, the completion of the arrangements. It beneath his last glorious work; and does not appear that the artist was at hither came crowds ofrich and poor, the all desirous of this marriage; the pro- haughty noblo and the loving disciple,
to render to the painter's memory the lence. He may not have Michael Anhomage of their tears.
gelo's mastery over the terrible and the They came to give a last farewell,
sublime; but be greatly excels the The young, the glad, the gay,
Florentine in dignity and grace. His
Madonnas may not possess the deep
spiritual beauty of those of the earlier With rich disparted hair ;
painters; nevertheless, they are “exAnd though the loving glance was gone,
ceeding fair,” and wear upon their brows The beauty still was there.
| the light of a “tender human love." And thus they met-a princely bandThe rich, the great, the proud;
His colouring may not be characterized The scholar, and the patron high,
by the brilliancy and richness which Alike in homage bowed.
distinguished the school of Venice: but With solemn steps, and downcast eyes,
| his design is by far more pure and lofty With hushed and reverent breath; In the awful presence-room
than that of the Venetians. Others Of the majesty of death.
might approach him in one particular And “pictured dreams" were bright around, department; but, in completeness and
But chief among them rose,
versatility, he was without a rival, In most divine repose.
The genius of Raphael was highly The likeness of the victor Christ,
dramatic. Every sentiment that can When unto earth was given
sway the heart, every passion that can Glimpse of the glory that he wore, Among the thrones of heaven.
conyulse the soul, has found a truo Ah! it was well that they should place
and ready exponent in the creations of The cold and lifeless clay,
his pencil. The impress of poetic feelBeneath the image of the truth, The life, the light, the way!
ing is stamped upon all his productions;
and perhaps no painter has ever posOf him, the holy priest, to whom The Father God had given
sessed more just claims to the proud The mastery over death and hell,
title of the Shakspere of Modern Art. The fairest crown in heaven.
He rarely repeats himself; in the grace And he who pictured that bright scene, Lay still in child-like rest;
of his compositions, in the beauty, digThe wreath unheeded on his brow,
nity, and character of his heads, he is The purple on his breast.
alike eloquent and alone. He might not hear if nations rose
We have no written record of RaTo greet him with acclaim; He might not hear the voice of love
phael's inner life; of his thought and That lowly breathed his name.
sentiment, of his loves and his sympaThey gazed upon the life-like forms, thies, of his woes, joys, faith, and His hand had loved to trace,
aspirations. The pictured halls of the And on the marble, pure and still, Of his placid, sleeping face.
Vatican compose the fair temple, wherein His genius bright with hues of heaven, his life-intellectual is enshrined; and, Still “skied them overhead;"
in truth, we could scarcely ask for more. And 'mid that flush of power and light,
It is a revelation of power and majesty They scarce could deem him dead.
and beauty, and tells us sufficient, if And hearts that never felt before, Were touched and bleeding then;
not all we should like to know of the And sighs were breathed, and tears were in
character of the inspiring genius; a The eyes of lofty men.
genius, we should imagine, with wide Then slowly moved the reverent crowd, And left the sacred spot;
and unchained sympathies, rejoicing in But that hushed room and that pale corse, the glory and loveliness of nature, reThey never more forgot!
garding life as a beauty and a blessing, The remains of Raphael were fol- land working out the poem of existence lowed to the grave by a long and stately with the faith of a lofty soul and the funeral procession, amid the deep heart- love of a generous heart. Were it otherregrets of an assembled multitude. His
wise, indeed, there would be no existent tomb is in the Church of the Pantheon, harmony between genius and its pronear that of his betrothed wife, Maria ductions; and from these productions de Bibbiena The Pope requested Car- the true spiritual essence of mental chadinal Bembo to compose his epitaph. racter is best shadowed forth. It will His loss was deplored throughout Italy be said that base and unworthy men as a national calamity.
have often thought and acted aright. Raphael is generally placed first in Yes; but not uniformly. The works of the catalogue of painters. No other such may be brilliant with coruscations artist of modern times has ever united of genius, but they will assuredly be in himself so great a variety of excel- | deficient in that stedfast, shining light,
which can alone exist when the whole a circumstance which almost proves of being moves in sweet concert with the itself that he could not have employed universal harmonies.
his short life otherwise than well, the Some accusations have been brought writer continues: “As Raphael carried against the moral character of Raphael. to the highest perfection the union of We believe them to be utterly un- those faculties of head and hand which founded ; and, in support of our own constitute the completo artist, so this opinion, we are happy to adduce a tes harmony pervaded his whole being, and timony from the elegant pen of Mrs. nothing deformed or discordant could Jameson: “ There was a vulgar idea at enter there. In all the portraits which one time prevalent, that Raphael was a exist of him, from infancy to manhood, man of vicious and dissipated habits, there is a divine sweetness and repose ; and even died a victim to his excesses. the little cherub face of three years old This slander has been silenced for ever, is not more serene and angelic than the by indisputable evidence to the contrary. same features at thirty. The child whom And now we may reflect with pleasure, father and mother, tutor and stepmother that nothing rests on surer evidence caressed and idolized in his loving inthan the admirable qualities of Raphael, nocence, was the same being whom we that no earthly renown was ever so im- see in the pride of manhood subduing sullied by reproach, so justified by and reigning over all hearts; so that, merit, so confirmed by concurrent opi. to borrow the words of a contemporary, nion, so established by time.”
• not only all men, but the very brutes After adverting to the painter's ex- loved him ;' the only very distinguished traordinary industry (for he left behind man of whom we read, who lived and him, when he died, at thirty-seven years died without an enemy or a detractor." of age, 287 pictures and 576 drawings), I
JOHN KEATS. "To the poet, if to any man, it may passion and a premature death." As justly be conceded to be estimated by men die so they walk among posterity, what he has written rather than by and our impression of Keats is that of what he has done, and to be judged by an earnest, highly susceptible nature, the productions of his genius rather | perseveringly testing its own powers, than by the circumstances of his out and striving over towurds a realization ward life. For although the choice and of its high ideal of perfection ; of a treatment of a subject may enable us manly heart bravely surmounting and to contemplate the mind of the his-profiting by its own hard experience-torian, the novelist, or the philosopher, and of an imagination glowing with all yet our observation will be more or less the brilliant hues of romance and allelimited and obscured by the sequence gory, ready to inundate the world, yet of events, the forms of manners, or the learning to flow within regulated chanexigences of theory, and the personality nels, and endeavouring to abate its vioof the writer must be frequently lost; lence without decreasing its power. while the poet, if his utterances be deep! Ever improving in his art, he gave and true, can hardly bide himself even no reason to believe that his marvellous beneath the epic or dramatic voil, and faculty partook of the nature of that often makes of the rough public ear, a facility of rhyming which in many men confessional into which to pour the has been the outlet of their ardent feelrichest treasures and holiest secrets of ings in youth and early manhood, but his soul. His life is in his writings, which as the cares of the world have and his poems are his works indeed. pressed more heavily upon them have The biography, therefore, of a poet subsided into morbidness of feeling or can be little more than a comment on have disappeared altogether. In him his poems, though his life may be of no one doubts that a true genius was long duration, and chequered by strange suddenly arrested, and they who will not and various adventures - but these allow him to have won a place in the first pages concern one whose whole lifo may ranks of English Literature, will not be summed up in three volumes of deny the promise of his candidature. poems, some earnest friendships, onol The interest which attaches to the