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Hogarth, William, 1697-1764 / The analysis of beauty : written with a view of fixing the fluctuating ideas of taste
(1753)

Chap. II: of variety,   pp. 16-17


Page 17

,ANALYSIS ofBEAUTY. 
I mean here, and every where indeed, a compofed 
variety; for variety uncompofed, and without defign, 
is confufion and deformity. 
Obferve, that a gradual leffening is a kind of varying 
that gives beauty. The pyramid diminifhing from its 
bafis to its point, and the fcroll or voluta, gradually 
leffening to its center, are beautiful forms. So alfo ob- 
je6ts that only feem to do fo, though in fat they do 
not, have equal beauty: thus perfpe&ive views, and 
particularly thofe of buildings, are always pleafmg to 
the eye. 
The little fhip, between figure'17 and 88, fuppos'd 
moving along the fhore even with the eye, might have 
its top and bottom bounded by two lines at equal dif- 
tances all the way, as A; but if the flip puts out to 
fea, thefe lines at top and bottom would feem to vary 
and meet each other by degrees, as B, in the point C, 
which is in the line where the fky and water meets, 
call'd the horizon. Thus much of the manner of per- 
fpedives adding beauty, by feemingly varying other- 
wife unvaried forms, I thought, might be acceptable 
to thofe, who have not learnt perfpe&ive. 
CHAP. 


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