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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 29.djvu/667

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The perpendicular style was peculiar to England. On the Continent the fifteenth century gave birth to a variety of "after-Gothic" styles, mostly remarkable for extravagance and want of taste, and which speedily disappeared before the classic form which had already been revived in Italy. In this country, however, Gothic architecture died hard. The English art continued to maintain its individuality for fully a century, though deprived in a great measure of its elevating spirit. The Tudor or Elizabethan manner, though very successful in baronial mansions, and peculiarly applicable to "domestic" purposes, has a distinctly "debasing" effect when applied to ecclesiastical edifices. The growing influence of the Renaissance also, in the attempts to graft classic ornaments and composition on mediæval forms of construction, produces often a mongrel effect. In a word, the natural development of architectural art was arrested. Before the end of the seventeenth century the triumph of the Italian school was complete. The mediæval art was opprobriously branded with its present name of Gothic, and the sublime fanes which it had produced became, in the language of Sir Christopher Wren, "mountains of stone, huge buildings, but unworthy the name of architecture." The feeling was, in fact, that we had been traveling along a wrong path, and should return to the point at which the art was left by the Romans.

At the present day the classic and the mediæval modes have each their partisans. We will not here attempt to discuss the merits of the rival styles. We will only point out that while the classic art embodies the finished conceptions of the ancient schools of thought, the Gothic is associated with the chain of events which mark the struggle for national liberties. The one represents satisfaction with an existing state of things, the other progress toward an ideal. Having won our liberties, we can study in peace the laws and usages of by-gone ages. Having solved the problem of adapting the ancient art of building to the requirements of modern times, we can indulge our fancy in the selection of our models.—Gentleman’s Magazine.



THOUGH it speaks little for modern civilization, the masses of the people are wont to esteem the savage as preternaturally wise in the secrets of Nature, more especially in the prevention and elimination of disease, accrediting him with knowledge botanical, pharmacal, and therapeutical, that if possessed of but a shadow of reality would be little less than divine. In this we have interesting evidence of man's tendency to reversion, and of lingering attributes of the final state of his awe in the presence of the occult, and inherent worship of the