POUSSIN'S VIEWS OF HIS ART.

Poussin, in his directions to artists who came to study at Rome, used to say that "the remains of antiquity afforded him instruction that he could not expect from masters;" and in one of his letters to M. de Chantelou, he observes that "he had applied to painting the theory which the Greeks had introduced into their music—the Dorian for the grave and the serious; the Phrygian for the vehement and the passionate; the Lydian for the soft and the tender; and the Ionian for the riotous festivity of his bacchanalians." He was accustomed to say "that a particular attention to coloring was an obstacle to the student in his progress to the great end and design of the art; and that he who attaches himself to this principal end, will acquire by practice a reasonably good method of coloring." He well knew that splendor of coloring and brilliancy of tints would ill accord with the solidity and simplicity of effect so essential to heroic subjects, and that the sublime and majestic would be degraded by a union with the florid and the gay. The elevation of his mind is conspicuous in all his works. He was attentive to vary his style and the tone of his color, distinguishing them by a finer and more delicate touch, a tint more cheerful or austere, a site more cultivated or wild, according to the character of his subject and the impression he designed to make; so that we are not less impressed with the beauty and grandeur of his scenery, than with the varied, appropriate, and dignified characteristics which distinguish his works.