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covers, screens, mirror-frames, carpets, curtains, dress, &c. And this is easily explained. Admiration can only be caused by an operation of the intellect; a sculptured beefsteak or cauliflower, or any such gross utility, would not cause admiration, because the thing asserts its use so emphatically, proclaims is services so loudly, that there is nothing left for the intellect to do, no latitude for the play of the fancy, no suggestings, and therefore no admiration. Advertisements, for the same reason, are rarely looked on as things of beauty.
Having considered ornaments, utensils, foods, vehicles, shops, and buildings, let us turn for a moment to places in which utility or beauty is recognised. The public street is one of the most utilised of all places. Vehicles and passengers are continually hurrying over it. It is the medium of every kind of business and the general channel of locomotion. Yet the public streetway is not thought capable of sustaining any ornament. Compare with it the tesselated pavement of a palace or cathedral, and then declare which groundwork the country could best afford to lose. So likewise the streets, courts, and passages of a city are much more used but much less beautiful than country roads and lanes, which are considered lovely and charming. After what has been already said, there is no need to compare cornfields with vegetable-gardens, vegetable-gardens with fruit-gardens, or fruit-gardens with flower-gardens; but compare a well-trodden green or common with a well-kept square in regard to their utility and their beauty; compare a coal-wharf with a pebbly beach; compare a market-place with a private lawn; compare quays used for shipping and unshipping merchandise with boulevards used chiefly as promenades; compare a factory with a wood; compare a coal-mine with a dingle or a heathery hill; compare those well-utilised mercantile streets, filled all day with huge vans and waggons doing business, nothing but business, and a great deal of it, with those carriage-drives and esplanades fully utilised but a few hours of the day, and then only for recreation and amusement; compare stable-yards and warehouse sheds with parterres and botanic gardens; compare an active seaport town with a fashionable watering-place; compare the city with the country; compare the sun with the moon.
From places we are naturally led to consider scenes, gatherings, entertainments, &c. Some of these, indeed, have so little pretension to beauty of any kind, that it seems incongruous to name the subject in connection with them. The reason, however, will be found, by the inverse ratio law, in the great utility involved. Other scenes in which utility is diminutive will be found to present a very beautiful or a very showy appearance. Compare, for example, a sitting of the House of Commons with a conversazione; compare a competitive examination with a fancy ball; compare a lawsuit with a levee; compare an arbitration case with a picnic; compare a political meeting with a fashionable reception; compare a scientific congress with a garden party; compare a cattle fair with an exhibition of arts; compare a herring fleet with a regatta; compare the sun at noon, when doing its greatest amount of work, with the sun just rising or just setting—and the co-existence of beauty and utility in inverse proportions will, I think, be plain. We might go on to compare the various kinds of trees, those which grow in the great forests that supply us with timber—the oak, ash, pine, fir, teak, beech, lime, sycamore, chestnut, elm — with those which grow in our gardens and squares, and supply us with shelter and shade—the holly, acacia, laburnum, thorn, willow, cedar, yew, laurel, birch, and bay. Hymns to the latter have often been sung, while the praises of the former are but seldom heard.
Literature and professional callings are not, it may be said, fit subjects wherein to look for beauty. Nevertheless, there is a general impression, and one well founded too, that certain kinds, both of study and employment, are less calculated to call forth admiration, are less charming and attractive than others. Merchants, mechanics, shopkeepers, builders, engineers, farmers, schoolmasters, lawyers, bankers, and others, who perform the chief and hardest work in most civilised countries; will, for example, stand lower in the scale of æsthetic value than artists, naturalists, painters, sculptors, engravers, poets, musicians, architects, and others, who deal with the lighter branches of employment, with the refinements of civilisation, and whose work is less indispensable but more taking and attractive. So likewise it is with regard to books and study. Compare spelling, grammar, geography, history, and arithmetic with fairy tales, romances, fables, fictions, and novels; compare dictionaries with diaries, political economy with poetry, mathematical with magazine literature; compare law with biography, book-keeping with dramas, maps with pictures, essays with songs, books of medicine with books of travels ; compare telegrams with valentines, ledgers with albums, time-tables with art journals, and so on.
We now come to the most exalted class of all-human beauty; and here I need hardly ask to which sex the palm belongs. I need not say whose features are the fairest and loveliest, nor inquire whose muscles are strongest and whose brain largest. Men it is who dig the ground, sow the land, reap the harvest, thresh the corn, hew down forests, blast quarries, smelt ore, sink coal shafts, sail the seas, catch fish, build houses, construct ships, lay railroads and telegraph cables, make roads, erect bridges, invent machines, make scientific discoveries, solve philosophical problems, defend the country and fight its battles,-in other words, contribute the largest share of work and energy to the maintenance of existence and the progress of the human race. To this sex then appertains the greatest share of power and sublimity. Women, on the other hand, discharge the lighter, minor, delicate duties, and to them belong in a pre-eminent degree the beautiful, the graceful, the comely, the soft and captivating attributes of human nature. Nor is there in this arrangement any merit or demerit on either side. It is no time for the giving or taking of compliments; but thus nature has constituted us, and even thus we must suffer and behave. We have no choice in either case; the male sex must on the whole be the most useful; the female sex must on the whole be the most beautiful.
If we come to details, we shall find the same rule amply borne out. The female sex is universally recognised as that capable of sustaining the greatest amount of ornament, and the male as that capable of performing the greatest amount of work. The vocabulary of apparel forms a counterpart to that of architecture, and the respective wardrobes of the two sexes are significantly disparate. Let us take a look at them. Men have in general but a little dozen articles of clothing, while the attire of women knows no end. A hat, coat, waistcoat, trousers, boots, collar, and necktie exhaust the exterior dress of most men, while it would be difficult to enumerate all the articles which are seen upon women. Of the latter, instance the following: Feathers, lace, sprays, head-dresses, wreaths, caps and fichus, ribbons, veils, artificial flowers, clusters for bonnets, stuffed birds, wings and buckles, ruffs and ruffles, tippets, lappets, shawlettes, collarettes, gauntlets, necklets, shoulder scarves, boas, garnitures, worked skirts, checks, twills, point embroidery, pleatings, tucks, flounces, slashed sleeves, fringes, rosettes, bows, tassels, sashes, buttons, beads, belts, gimp, furs, skins, capes, jerseys, polonaises, pelisses, trains, paletots, together with a vast number of articles of which men know nothing whatever. The materials, moreover, of which the above garments may be made are too many and various to be enumerated; and besides all this, ladies have special costumes for the morning, for the afternoon, for the evening, for walking, for riding, for dancing, for yachting, for the opera, for weddings, and other occasions. To the female sex also are allotted bracelets, necklaces, rings in profusion, ear-rings, brooches, lockets, solitaires, and other jewellery. The most business part of one's attire is the pockets, of which men have generally eight, while women have only one, or if more, they are usually empty.
So, again, if we come to subdivisions of human beauty, we shall find that young persons are, ceteris paribus, considered more beautiful than adults. The element of sublimity is doubtless greater in the latter, but so far as beauty alone is concerned, it will I think be granted, as all poets have assumed, that the palm belongs to youth; and as to the respective usefulness of the two ages there can be less question. Coming to another subdivision, we might compare the features of poets on the whole with those of philosophers on the whole : the good looks of the former are proverbial, and many instances might be given, while those of the latter are almost a thing unknown; the utility of these two classes, however, is manifestly inverse.
Another subdivision would lead us to compare the different parts of the body with each other, and there we should find that the most useful are the least beautiful, and vice versâ. Who ever hears of a beautiful stomach, or a comely liver, or handsome intestines ? And yet what part of the body can be more useful, more essential to existence, than those ? Compared with them, the lips, the nose, the eyes, the eyelids, brows, and ears are of very minor importance. It matters comparatively little whether we lose our sense of smell, of taste, of sight, of hearing, whether our eyelashes fall out, our complexion fades, our hair goes, or our fingers grow fat; but it matters immensely whether our stomach refuses to digest, our liver to purify, or our lungs to filter. Another subdivision would indicate that the principle holds true even of the different features of the face. The eyeballs are surely of more importance to life than the lids or brows, yet it is by the latter that we calculate beauty of expression, for all normal eyeballs are much about the same. Again, the nose is surely of more importance than the eyes, since its information is more reliable, and we are oftener deceived