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K I N G

for private amusement, but for

Το' Τ Η Ε 6 IR,

HE fine arts have ever been en

couraged by wise princes, not singly their beneficial influence in society. By uniting different ranks in the same elegant pleasurés, they promote benevolence: by cherishing love of order, they inforce submission to government; and by inspiring delicacy of feeling.. they make regular government a double blessing

These confiderations embolden me to hope for your Majesty's patronage in behalf

a. 20

of

of the following work, which treats of the fine arts, and attempts to form a standard of taste, by unfolding those principles that ought

the taste of every individual.

to govern

It is rare to find one born with such delicacy of feeling, as not to need inftruction : it is equally rare to find one so low in feeling, as not to be capable of instruction. And yet, to refine our taste with refpect to beauties of art or of nature, is scarce endeavoured in any feminary of learning: a lamentable defect, considering how early in life taste is susceptible of culture, and how difficult to reform it if unhappily perverted. To furnish materials for fupplying that defect, was an additional motive for the present undertaking.

To promote the fine arts in Britain, has become of greater importance than is generally imagined. A flourishing commerce begets opulence ; and opulence, inflaming our appetite for pleasure, is commonly vented on luxury and on every sensual gratification: Selfishness rears its head; becomes fashionable ; and infecting all ranks, extinguishes the amor patria and every spark of public spirit. To prevent or to retard fuch fatal corruption, the genius of an Alfred cannot devise any means more efficácious, than venting opulence upon the fine arts.

[] Riches so employd instead of encouragine vice, will excite both public and privato virtue. Of this happy effect, ancient Greece furnishés one thining instance ; and why should we despair of another in Britain ?

In the commencement of an auspicious reign, and even in that early period of life when pleasure commonly is the sole pursuit, your Majesty has uniformly display'd to a delighted people, the noblest principles, ripened by early culture ; and for that reason, you will be the more disposed to favour every rational plan for advancing the art of training up youth. Among the many branches of education, that which tends to make deep impreslions of virtue, ought to be a fundamental measure in a well-regulated government: for depravity of manners will render ineffectual the most falutary laws; and in the midst of opulence, what other means to prevent such depravity but early and virtuous discipline? The British discipline is susceptible of great improvements; and if we can hope for them, it must be from a young and accomplished Prince, eminently sensible of their importance. To establish a complete system of education, seems reserved by providence for a Sovereign who commands the hearts of his subjects. Success will crown the undertaking, and endear George THE THIRD to our latest pofterity.

THE

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