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When any one is admitted, he pays a fee of five guineas, and afterwards 13s. a quarter, as long as he continues a member, towards defraying the expences of the society; and for the payment thereof he gives a bond; but most of the members on their first admittance chuse to pay down twenty guineas, which discharges them from any future payments. , ,, . Any fellow may however free himself from these obliga tions, by only writing to the president, that he desires to withdraw from the society.
When the president has taken the chair, and the fellows their seats, those who are not of the society withdraw: except any baron of England, Scotland, and Ireland, any person of a higher title, or any of his majesty's privy council of any of the United Kingdoms, and any foreigner of eminent repute, may stay, with the allowance of the president, for that time;, and upon leave obtained of the president and fellows present, or the major part of them, any other person may be permitted to stay for that time: but the name of every person thus permitted to stay, that of the person who moved for him, and the allowance, are to be entered in the journal book.
The business of the society in their ordinary meetings, is, to order, take account, consider and discourse of philosophical experiments and observations; to read, hear, and discourse upon letters, reports, and other papers, containing philosophical matters; as also to view and discourse upon the rarities of nature and art, and to consider what .may be deduced from them, and how far they may bc improved for use or discovery.
No experiment can be made at the charge of the society, but by order of the society or council. And in order to the propounding and making experiments, the importance of such experiments is to be considered with respect to the discovery of any truth, or to the use and benefit of mankind.
The meetings of the Royal Society are weekly, on Thursday evening. The members of the council are elected
out out of the fellows, on St. Andrew's Day, before dinner." Eleven of the old council are chosen for the ensuing year; and ten are elected out of the other members.' Out of these are elected the president, treasurer, and secretary, &c.
The ANTIQUARIAN Society was first formed in London, about the year 1580, by some of the most eminent literary characters in the country, at the head of which was the learned and benevolent archbishop Parker. Their first meetings were held weekly at the house of Sir William Dethick, knight, Garter king at arms, in the College of Heralds. The society had increased to such magnitude in the course of ten years, that archbishop Whitgift, in 1590, proposed, though unsuccessfully, to queen Elizabeth, to form a college of English antiquaries. A similar attempt was made under James I.; and, though these applications were equally unsuccessful, the society had frequent, though not stated meetings, to discuss curious points of their profession, till their revival in 1706, since which they have met without interruption, preserving and publishing valuable antiquities belonging to the British empire.
The society obtained a royal charter on the ed of November 1751, by which they were incorporated “ THE SOCIETY OF ANTIQUARIES OF LONDON,” consisting of a president, council, and fellows, who, on St. George's Day, annually elect twenty-one of their number, to be council for the ensuing year. Out of this council the president is clected, who nominates four vice-presidents to act in his absence. The subordinate officers are a treasurer, director, secretary, &c.; their meetings are on Thursday evenings.
THE ROYAL ACADEMY. The history of this establish ment comprizes, in a great measure, the history of the fine arts in Great Britain. The art of painting in this country has, till very recently, been in a fluctuating state; and though many of our monarchs encouraged and patronized the great professors of the arts who flourished during their different reigns; the number of ingenious per. sons who continually increased in every branch, were not sufficiently distinguished. The few indeed who had taste A a 2
and spects, to enjoy all the advantages of academicians. Why this restriction has extended to such useful artists and respectable men, as the body of engravers, is not for us to examine; but we can see no reason why such names as Sharpe, Heath, Green, Milton, &c. should not rank with West, Fuseli, Flaxman, Smirke, &c. Trifing distinctions where great objects are in view, appear invidious; and too often give the vulgar an opportunity of depreciating the whole fabric. . There are four PROFESSORS, of painting, architecture, anatomy, and antient literature, which are at present held hy Henry Fuseli, Esq. John Soane, Esq. John Sheldon, Esq. and Charles Burney, LL. D. The business of these gentlemen is to instrust the students by lectures, &c. in the principles of composition, to form their taste, and to strengthen their judgment; to point out to them the beauties and imperfections of celebrated works of art; to fit them for an unprejudiced study of books, and to lead them into the readiest and most efficacious paths of study. The professors continue in office during the king's pleasure, and have a small annual salary.
and discernment sought out and purchased their works; but the public were unacquainted of their value; they were unacquainted with each other; they had no society or ina tercourse with their fellow artists. . The good sense and liberality of the British nation, however, continued to fur. nish able masters in their various professions; these collected their scattered brethren, and formed a little society, who wisely considering their mutual interest, by a voluntary subscription among themselves, established an ACADEMY in St. Martin's Lane, Charing Cross.
In the year 1760 the first exhibition of the artists was made under the sanction of the Society of Arts, Manufactures, and Commerce. The success of these exhibitions, and the harmony which at that time subsisted among exhibitors, naturally led them to the thoughts of soliciting an establishment, and forming themselves into a body; in consequence of which his majesty, king George HI. granted them his royal charter, incorporating them by the name of • The Society OF ARTISTS OF GREAT BRITAIN;" this charter bears date January 26, 1765.
A division afterwards taking place among the members, was the cause of establishing THE ROYAL ACADEMY, in 1768; which has continued in a flourishing state, whilst the Society of Artists have dwindled into obscurity. .
The Royal Academy consists of those members, who are called Royal Academicians, Associates, and Associate Engravers, who are not to belong to any other society of artists established in London, " No associate can be admitted a Royal Academician, except approved by the king, and depositing a picture, basrelief, or other specimen of his abilities, to the council before the Ist of October next ensuing his election... :
The Associates must be artists by profession, that is to . say, painters, sculptors, or architects, to be at least tweniy, four years of age, and not apprentices. '
The Associate Engravers, are not to exceed six ; they are not be admitted into any of the offices of the academy, ņor have any, vote in their assemblies; but in other re
The Schools are furnished, both summer and winter, with living models of both sexes, plaister figures, bassreliefs, and lay-men with proper draperies, under certain regulations. • The LIBRARY consists of books, prints, models, &c. re. lating to architecture, sculpture, painting, and the relative sciences; and is open one day in every week to all students properly qualified.
The annual Exhibition of the artists continues open to to the public six weeks, or longer, at the discretion of the council; and the money received, after payment of the annual and contingent expences, is placed out to increase the stock in the 3 per cent. consolidated annuities, to be called The Pension Fund, and appropriated to the support of decayed members and their widows.
The academy also distribute prizes to the students who have excelled in the science of Design, under proper re
gulations. gulations. « All students (painters, sculptors; or archi. tects,) baving obtained gold medals, shall have the privilege of becoming candidates (by rotation) to be sent abroad on his majesty's pension, which allows the successful candidate 301. for his journey there, 1001. per annum for threc years, and 301. for his journey back.”
There are other regulations by which the Royal Academicians are governed, which are too diffuse for insertion in this work.
The Hercules at the foot of the staircase has been a constant object of admiration..
The Library of the Royal Academy is ornamented with a covered cieling, painted by Sir Joshuu Reynolds, and Cipriani. The centre, by Reynolds, represents the Theory of the Arts, formed as an elegant and majestic female seated in the clouds, her countenance looking towards the heavens; holding in one hand a compass, and in the other a label, inscribed, “ THEORY IS THE KNOWLEDGE OF WHAT IS TRULY Nature.” The four compartments, by Cipriani, are distinctive of Nature, History, Allegory, and Fable.
The Council Room is richly stuccoed, and the cieling exhibits paintings from the pencil of West. The centre picture represents the Graces unveiling Nature; surrounded by four pictures of the Elements, from which the imitative arts collect their objects, under the description of female figures, attended by genii. Large oval pictures adorn the two extremities of the ceiling, the work of Angelica Kauffman, representing Invention, Composition, Design, and Co. louring. In the angles or spandrells in the centre, are four coloured medallions, representing Apelles, the painter; · Phidias, the sculptor; Apollodorus, the architect; and Archimedes, the mathematician; and eight smaller medallions, held up by lions, round the great circle, represent in chiaro-obscuro, Palladio, Bernini, Michael Angelo, Fiamingo, Raphael, Dominichino, Titian, and Rubens; painted by Rebecca,