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because the more perfect is the Imitation; and Imita. tion supposes no Reality. If we really saw the Earl of Esex's Head struck off on the Stage, no Body would go there for Pleasure, which shews that we are fecretly pleased the tragic Distress is not Reality. • Chuse a Day on which to represent the moft subTime and affecting Tragedy which we have; appoint the most favourite Actors; spare no Cost upon the Scenes and Decorations; unite the greatest Efforts of Poetry, Painting, and Music; and when you have collected your Audience, just at the Moment when their Minds are erect with Expectation, let it be reported that a State Criminal of high Rank is on the Point of being executed in the adjoining Square; in a Moment the Emptiness of the Theatre would demon• strate the comparative Weakness of the imitative Arts, and proclaim the Triumph of the real Sympathy.'
But here he does not observe that there is an ad ventitious Motive:"Curiosity would begin to operate, and our Love of Novelty would hurry us away to a Sight uncommon. But chufe a Cart for Tyburn, spare no Pains in filling it with Malefactors, Etc. then tell the Audience of it; or tell them that an House is on Fire, and then we shall see the Triumph of imitated Woe over real Sympathy. The Fact is this: in real Distress we have a Joy in finding an Aptitude in ourselves to indulge the Feelings of Humanity; in fictitious Representations, we have the same Pleasure, and the additional Delight of seeing beautiful Imitation, and considering that the Distress is not real. It is upon these Principles that the Abbe du Bos and Fontenelle have justly accounted for 'Tragic Pleasure. In talking of Imitation, our
Author fays, "When the Object reprefented in Poetry or Painting is such, as we could have had no Defire of seeing in Reality, then I may be sure the Pleasure is owing to the Power of Imitation; as a Cottage, a Dunghill, &c. But when the Object is such as we thould run to see if real, we may rely
upon it, that the Power of the Poem or the Picture is more owing to the Thing itself, than any Confideration of the Skill of the Imitator, however excelJent. But surely in the imitative Arts we can never lose the idea of Imitation. If the Object be inconliderable, or even odious, it will please in a juft Re. presentation ; and if the Object be sublime or beauti. ful, it will please the more on this Account, if the Imitation be just; but if the Imitation be defective, we revolt from it, notwithstanding the Excellence of the Original. For Example: no Body will go to the Theatre to see an Actor of the meaner Class; and yet let Hogarth give a Portrait of him, and we hall all admire the Strokes of his Pencil. On the other Hand, we all go to see Garrick, and yet if an Artist should draw him ill, we should unaniniously reject the Piece; but when Hogarth presents him in Richard, we acknowledge Garrick's Face, his Eyes, his Brow, &c. and though the Idea of Garrick in that Attitude ex. cites an agreeable Recollection, yet it is the Imitation that is uppermost in our Thoughts, and which we principally admire. Our Author in the next Place takes Notice of Ambition; and then adds, that haying considered the Passions, he shall proceed to examine into the Things that cause the Sublime and Beautiful. With regard to the Sublime, he says, the Passion raised by it is Astonishment; and Astonishment he defines " That State of the Soul in which all its Motions are suspended with fome Degree of Hore ror.' But Astonishment is perhaps that State of the Soul, when the Powers of the Mind are suspended with Wonder. Horror may tincture it, and Love may enliven it. As for Instance : when we are told, affiavit Deus et di Jipantur, *He blew with his Wind, and they were scattered,' we are suspended with Wonder, and are astonished at such exalted Power, not without a Mixture of Horror : but when we read, "God said, Let there be Light, and there was Light;
we are here again astonished at the Obedience paid to the Mandate, but we are free from Horror, and the only Passions that come in to increase the Wonder that expands our Imaginations, are Love and pious Admiration. The Effect of the Sublime is, as Longinus has told us, to enlarge the Mind with vast Conceptions, and to transport it with a noble Pleafure beyond itself. It was in reading that Description that, as Boileau tells us, the Prince of Conde cried out, voila le sublime ; voila son veritable charac
That's the Sublime; that's the true Character of it.' In Fact, Longinus's Account of the Sublime is, we apprehend, very juft: it is not built on any fingle Paffion; though they all may serve to enflame that pathetic Enthusiasm, which, in Conjunction with an exalted Thought, serves to hurry away the Mind with great Rapidity from itself. Terror is therefore a great Addition, and in like Manner so are all other Paslıons, Grief, Love, Rage, Indignation, Ambi ion, Compassion, &c. Our Author adds, that whatever is Terrible is. Sublime: the Gallows, a red-hot Iron, &c. are Terrible, but not Sublime: the Terrible will exalt the Sublime where it is, but cannot create it where it is not; that is to say, they must sublift separately.
Nero letting Fire to Rome, and Queen Mary burning Heretics in Smithfield, cannot convey to any senfible Mind the fainieft Idea of the Sublime, tho' we imagine it must be allowed that they raise Horror in a very powerful Degree. Obscurity, our Author observes, increates the Sublime, which is certainly very just; but from thence erroneously infers, that Clearness of Imagery is unnecessary to affect the Paffions; but surely nothing can inove but what gives Ideas to the Mind, and it is thus that even Music operates by recalling Images by Means of Sounds, which set the Imagination at Work with all her various Combinations, Our Author pursues his
Thought Thought still further, and combats the Opinion of the Abbe du Bos, viz. that Painting has the Advantage over Poetry, because it presents its Objects more clearly and distinctly. This Notion he thinks not true, but surely the Reason he gives is not a very good one: he gives the Preference to Poetry on Account of its Obscurity; whereas it Thould be on Account of its greater Perspicuity, its Amplifications, and its being at Liberty to select a greater Variety of Circumstances, in order to make its Exhibitions more vivid and striking. If a Painter was to give a Portrait of Satan as represented in the following Lines of Milton,
He above the rest In Shape and Gesture proudly eminent Stood like a Tower, his Form had yet not loft All its original Brightness, nor appeared Less than Archangel ruin'd, and th'Excess Of Glory obscur'd; as when the Sun new ris'n Looks through the horizontal misty Air Shorn of his Beams: or from behind the Moon In dim Eclipse disastrous Twilight sheds On Half the Nations; and with Fear of Change
Perplexes Monarchs. He could never give an Idea of the Wonderful Stature, nor could he compare him with a Tower, the Sun, the Moon, nor upon the whole would he bring together that Combination of sublime Images, which, instead of obscuring, serve to illustrate and heighten the Colouring. He proceeds in the next Place to mention Privation as a Source of the Sublime, as when the Poet says, "Along the waste Dominions of the Dead.' And he enumerates other Sources, as Vaftness in any Object, Infinity, Succellion and Uniformity of Parts in Building, or any Object in Nature. Under the last Head he makes a very ingenious Remark, when he observes that a VOL. 111.
Succeffion of uniform Parts creates a Kind of artificial Infinite, and this, he adds, may be the Cause why a Rotund has such a noble Effect in Building; which perhaps is a better Reason than Mr. Addison's, who says, It is because in the Rotund at one Glance you take in Half the Building.' Here our Author might have allowed a Sublime without Terror ; for we apprehend Infinity is not so highly pleasing to the Soul of Man, on account of any Horror attending it, but on account of that strong progressive Motion of the Mind, which cannot reft contented with what it has grasped, but must be for ever urging on to something at a Distance from its Power, and as it were with Thoughts beyond the Reaches of our Souls. Dificulty comes in next, as a Promoter of the Sublime; as likewise Magnificence, Light, and Colour; and with regard to the last he enumerates a strong Red, Black, Brown, deep Purple, and the like, as Causes of the Sublime. He very juftly confiders the Sounds of Cataracts, Storms, Thunder, Artillery, as the Causes of great Impressions : and he also finds the Sublime in low, tremulous, and intermitting Sounds, but refers it folely to Terror: when Macbeth with a low Voice says, I dare do all that may become a Man; who dares do more is none;' we apprehend there is no Terror in this Speech, but we are pleased with the Poet's noble Conception of the Dignity of human Nature. He next finds the Sublime in the Cries of Animals. That depends however upon the Rank we have given in our Imaginations to the different Animals, though the confused Cry of any of them in a still folemn Night, when the Mind is already impressed with Awe, will help to heighten our Affections; fo that though they do not cause the Sublime, they may help to increase it by the Passions which they agitaté. He proceeds to look for the Sublime in Bitters and in Stenches: but the bitter Cup of Misery has in it nothing Sublime, but de