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ST. PAUL'S CATHEDRAL,
Historical Sketches and Descriptions
BOTH CHURCHES :
T! ( HIV I SIT Vall is
An entirely new and correct Biography of all that is interesting in
the Lives and Achievements of the most
ILLUSTRIOUS CHARACTERS OF THE UNITED KINGDOMS.
BY GEORGE LEWIS SMYTH.
ADDITIONALLY EMBELLISHED WITH
Coloured Views and Elevations.
HENRY FUSELI, R. A.
WERE the English people destitute of native talent for the fine arts, they might take no mean credit to themselves for the generous manner in which they have fostered and enriched foreign painters, sculptors, and musicians. Vandyke, Rubens, Scheemakers, Roubilliac, Lutherbourg, and Handel, are names memorable amidst a host of rivals who added to their fame, and principally established their fortunes in England. West drew his first breath and received his earliest impressions in another land, and Henry Fuseli was born at Zurich. The time of his birth has been variously stated : by some it has been made so distant as the year 1739, and by others so recent as 1742: the former date, however, seems to be generally preferred. His father, John Caspar Fuessli, for such was the family name, prosecuted the profession of a landscape and portrait painter with repute ; and young Henry showed early symptoms of partiality for the pursuit in which he subsequently became so distinguished : yet a determination was formed to educate him for the Church. Why it was ever attempted to pervert this predestination for the paternal art, as no one has recounted, it were not now easy to explain. We only know that he was entered at the Humanity College of Zurich with a view to holy orders, and there exhibited a promising earnest of original spirit and decided ability.
It was at this period that he formed a first acquaintance with the well-known Lavater, who was a fellow-student, and the following was the first occasion upon which the two friends distin. guished themselves. A leading magistrate of Zurich, who had grossly misconducted himself in a judicial case, was rash enough to try and hush the matter up by the influence of great wealth and high connexions. The affair, however, became a matter of much