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

Chap. XVII: of action,   pp. 138-153

Page 139

undoubtedly proper, and very neceffary accompliff- 
nents; yet are they frequently very imperfed in bring- 
ing about the bufinefs of graceful deportment. For 
altho' the mufcles of the body may attain a pliancy by 
thefe exercifes, and the limbs, by the elegant movement 
in dancing, acquire a facility in moving gracefully, yet 
for want of knowing the meaning of every grace, and 
whereonit depends, affedations and mifapplications often 
Adion is a fort of language which perhaps one time 
or other, may come to be taught by a kind of grammar- 
rules; but, at prefent, is only got by rote and imitation: 
and contrary to moft other copyings or imitations, 
people of rank and fortune generally excel their originals, 
the dancing-maflers, in eafy behaviour and unaffeded 
grace; as a fenfe of fuperiority makes them ad without 
confiraint; efpecially when their perfons are well turn'd. 
If fo, what can be more conducive to that freedom 
and neceffary courage which make acquired grace feen 
eafy and natural, than the being able to demonifrate 
'when we are a&ually jut and proper in the leaft move- 
ment we perform; whereas, for want of fuch certainty 
in the mind, if one of the moft finifh'd gentlemen at 
court was to appear as an ador on the public fiage, he 
would find himfelf at a lofs how to move properly, and 
be ftiff, narrow, and aukward in reprefenting even his 
own charater: the uncertainty of being right would 
naturally give him fome of that reifraint which the 
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