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The Art journal illustrated catalogue: the industry of all nations, 1851
(1851)

History of the great exhibition,   pp. xi-xxvi


Page xi


                           HISTORY OF THE GREAT EXHIBITION.
         "T IS MY ANXIOUS DESIRE TO PROMOTE AMONG NATIONS THE3 CULTIVATION
OF ALL THOSE ARTS WHITC ARE FOSTETRED BY PEACE,
                     AND WHICH IN THEIR TURN CONTRIBUTE TO MAINTAIN THE PEACE
OF THE WORLD. -THE QUEEN-
                          E commence this ILLUSTRATED     the prejudices
and animosities which have so long retarded
                            CATALOGUE of the prii  al con- the happiness
of nations; and to promote those feelings of
           *      o        tents of the GREAT EXHIBITION   peace and good
will" which are among the surest ante-
           l*71fJ wiSY@ ||with a brief but succinct History cedents of their
prosperity; a peace, which Shakspeare has
                            of the Building    and of the told us-      
   s
                       * if t71Project from its commencement z ~~~~~~Is of
the nature of a conquest;
                            Project from its commencement               
  For then both parties nobly are subdued,
                            UP to the present time.                     
  Adnihrprylw.
                              The experiment of an Exhibi-              
     neither party loses."
                            tion of the Industry of all the  It forms no
part of our present object to enter, with any
                            civilised Nations of the World has degree of
minuteness, into the history of exhibitions of this
                 been tried, and has succeeded beyond the class; but a brief
glance at the origin and progress of such
                 most sanguine expectations of its projec- associations in
France and England may not be considered
                 M tor. It is, indeed, scarcely possi le to irrelevant. So
far back as 1756-7, the Society of Arts of
                 instance any great enterprise of modern London offered prizes
for specimens of various manufactures
                 date which  as so completely satisfied the -tapestry, carpets,
porcelain, among others-anid publicly
                 anticipations which had been formed of its exhibited the
articles which were thus collected; and in
                 results.  Differing from most other insti- 1761 and 1762
the artists of Great Britain formed them-
                 tutions for benefiting the great family of selves into two
societies for the exposition and sale of works
                 mankind, which have required time and expe- of art. A few
years afterwards (1768), the Royal Academy
rience to mature, it has sprung, like Minerva from the brain  of Painting
was established, as a private society, under
of Jove "full armed," into life and activity; resembling the the
immediate patronage of the Crown, and Sir Joshua
goddess, however, only in her more pacific attributes; her love Reynolds
appointed its President. Since then, numerous
of the olive tree, and her patronage of the Industrial Arts. institutions
of a similar character have been set on foot in
Other nations have devised means for the display and encou- this country,
with considerable advantage to the. branches
ragement of their own arts and manufactures; but it has of industry they
were intended to benefit.  France must,
been reserved for England to provide an arena for the however, be regarded
as the originator of exhibitions which
exhibition oQf the industrial triumphs of the whole world. are, m character
and plan, most analogous to that on whose
She has offered an hospitable invitation to surrounding history we are about
to enter. We gather from the historical
nations to bring the choicest products of their industry  essay of Messieurs
Challamel and Burat, and the pamphlet of
to her capital, and there to enter into an amicable competition  the Marquis
d'Aveze on the subject, that, shortly after that
with each other and with herself; and she has endeavoured to  nobleman's
appointment to be Commissioner of the Royal
secure to them the certainty of an impartial verdict on their Manufactories
of the Globelins, of Sevres, and of the Savonnerie
efforts. Whatever be the extent of the benefit which this great in 1797,
he found that two years of neglect had reduced the
demonstration may confer upon the Industrial Arts of the workmen almost to
starvation, whilst it had left the respective
world, it cannot fail to soften, if not to eradicate altogether, warehouses
filled with their choicest productions. In this crisis,
                                                           xi           
                                   d


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