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HENRY FUSELI, Esq. M.A.R.A.
KEEPER, AND PROFESSOR OF PAINTING TO THE
ROYAL ACADEMY IN LONDON; MEMBER OF THE FIRST CLASS
OF THE ACADEMY OF ST. LUKE AT ROME.
THE FORMER WRITTEN, AND THE LATTER EDITED BY
JOHN KNOWLES, F.R.S.
CORRESPONDING MEMBER OF THE PHILOSOPHICAL SOCIETY AT ROTTERDAM,
“ Animo vidit, ingenio complexus est, eloquentiâ illuminavit.”
Velleius Paterculus in Ciceronem.
NEW BURLINGTON STREET.
THE RIGHT HONORABLE
COUNTESS DOWAGER OF GUILFORD,
BARONESS NORTH AND GUILFORD.
I FEEL a degree of diffidence in dedicating to your Ladyship the Life and Posthumous Works of Henry Fuseli; because, with regard to the former, no one is better acquainted with the extent of his talents, or can form a more accurate opinion of the powers of his conversation, and the excellent qualities of his head and heart, than yourself. In giving some account of his life and pursuits, I have endeavoured to speak of him as he was, and to become his “ honest chronicler." How far I have succeeded, it is for your Ladyship to form a judgment. Had it ever occurred to me, during his lifetime, that it would be my lot to become his Biographer, I should have kept a Journal, and thus have been enabled to present to you, and to the world, a more copious and rich view of his colloquial powers. But as this is not the case, if the Memoir bring to your remembrance the general power of his genius, or give an adumbration of his professional merit; if it convey impressions of his profound classical attainments and critical knowledge, and recall with them the simplicity of his domestic habits, my end is fully answered.
It is not for me to make an apology for sending to the public, under the high support of your Ladyship's name, the posthumous works of my friend; as these, I know, will be acceptable to you; and many of them have already received the highest encomiums, when delivered as Lectures before the Members of the Royal Academy of Arts.