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style: but nothing can compare with what we have ourselves. The designs of Mr. Flaxman are of the noblest productions of art, and frequently display a sublime simplicity which is worthy of his great original. Indeed he, who is so able to transfer such creations from one fine art to another, seems of a mind but little inferior to his who could first conceive them. To borrow the words of an excellent Italian sculptor: ‘Mr. Flaxman has translated Dante best; for he has translated him into the universal language of nature.' : In undertaking this comment, I am conscious of setting out on a very uncertain enterprize. Life, much less health, no one can calculate on. Yet with these and the encouragement of the public, I shall continue cheerfully. To solicit such encouragement, I send forth the present volume: if it be accorded, a second volume may quickly follow. Protection shall (at least as far mortal vicissitude authorizes a promise) produce attention.
Canto The Finst ( Introductory allegory)
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