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ART AND LITERATURE. « A Summer Evening is the title of a poem by King Oscar of Sweden and Norway, published in the" Pall Mall Magazine." It opens with the lines: The wind grows calm," its force absteis and dies away far off in spaae; Against the mast the white sail, wearied by the fray, clings with soft grace. Then, at the end, comes night- 0 fair night. 0 Charmer, wrap me round with thy breeze from the far West, And tired of love and joy, on the calm waters at ease take thou thy rest. The rumoured intention of the Society of Oil Painters to become a close society, and to admit to its exhibitions only works by members and specially invited artists, marks (observes the "Globe") a tendency which has .been developing during the last few years. It may be taken as a protest against the excessive desire of art workers of all sorts to appear in public whether they are fit for it or not, and against the consequent in- crease in the labours of all selecting juries, who have to wade through masses of stuff which has not the remotest chance of acceptance, in their search for reasonable material for exhibitions. The system which the Society of4Oil Painters pro- poses to adopt is apparently the same that has been followed for many years by the New English Art Club, which requires an invitation signed by two members to be presented by every outsider who wishes to submit work to the jury. As this restriction has been found by the club to work excellently, there seems no reason why something of the same sort should not be helpful to the Society of Oil Painters. There is at least a difference of opinion in regard to the alleged distaste of women for severe and systematic reading. One critic in the National Review asserts that neither for pleasure nor on principle do they study books which would culti- vate their minds and give them broad and stable views of life. Another makes the comforting statement that the good, or, as they are called, the solid," books taken by women from English circulating libraries are in the proportion of two to five-a very creditable average. M. Ernest Quentin Bauchart has shown us, in Les Femmes Bibliophiles," that many rare and beautiful volumes were for two centuries collected and treasured by French ladies, from Margaret of Valois to Marie Antoinette. How far the pleasures of a collector merge into the pleasures of a student is always a delicate point to decide, but Mr. Andrew Lang is of the opinion that some of these ladies loved their libraries, even to the reading point. Books and art," he says with happy tolerance, were probably more to Mme. de Pompadour's liking than the diversions by which she beguiled the tedium of Louis XV.; and many a time she would rather have been quiet with her plays and novels than engaged in conscientiously conducted but distaste- ful revels." La Duchesse de Montpensier-" La Grande Mademoiselle "-liked only serious and scholarly books. The frivolous ones, she used to say, wearied and plagued her. La Grande Mademoiselle was by no means the wisest of women; but the choice does credit to her taste for amusement. The romances of her age were a shade less diverting than mathematics. A peculiar interest attaches to such an exhibition as that of the drawings and studies by Sir Edward Burne-Jones which has just been opened in the Leicester Galleries in London. It shows in a very convincing manner what a sincere desire to master his art guided him throughout his life, and how he spared no effort to arrive at the results which seemed to him to be most worth striving after. These studies, with their astonishing variety of motive and method, their beauty of execution and charm of style, make a most fasci- nating display. They belong to various periods in his career, so that they illustrate adequately his de- velopment from precise and elaborate realism to that wonderful freedom of imaginative design which distinguished the accomplishment of his later years. There is nothing in the collection (the cc Globe" asserts) that is unworthy of him; the series has been very well selected and within its ii mits is remarkably complete. In the same galleries there is to be seen a collection of old stipple engravings which summarises some of the best and most characteristic features of an art which, if not actually lost, has scarcely retained to the present day its earlier purity of style. In this collection there are over a hundred and twenty examples of the work of the most famous engravers who used this particular reproductive method, and the majority of these examples are printed in colours. In most instances very perfect impressions have been secured, plates which show the highest develop- ment of the skill of both engraver and printer; and many of the prints are after pictures by artists of the highest repute. There is a large section of the public to which this exhibition will make the strongest possible appeal. A memorial parchment is about to be published for the German colonial soldiers who fell in South- West africa. It has been designed by the marine painter, Herr Hans Bohr, on a sketch made by the Kaiser. It represents an armed Germania, wear- ing the Imperial Crown, leaning upon the Prussian shield and holding a laurel-wreath outstretched. On the streamers of the wreath are inscribed the name of the fallen soldier, and the words He died for Emperor and Country Honour to hi8 memory." There are those who holdfthat at certain times and seasons there is no reading quite so delectable as the dictionary. It would indeed be difficult to find a more delightful book than the "Dictionary of Contemporary English Quotations," by Helena Swan. The quotations are almost all from writers who have flourished in the past fifty years; many are from writers A ho may still be expected to make valuable additions to the great and wonderful storehouse of English literature. Here you get Tennyson, Browning. Mr. Swinburne, and Mr. Austin Dobson, all of whom the man who is in the habit of quoting poetry is supposed to know. But there are passages fx c m authors who had not been heard of at all ten yez- vs ago, and there arejgems from people whom one has the misfortune never to have read or to intend to read. Even these are nice to have at hand. One can imagine circumstances when it would be quite pleasant to be able to remind oneself that Where love makes plenty of snnshine, there poverty casts no shade." The book is well printed and indexed. Much has been written about the Elizabethan Court, but one may always return to Miss Strick- land with pleasure, for in her Life of Queen Elizabeth," of which an abridged and newly-edited version with notes is now published, she imparts a fascinating individuality to her subject, especi- ally in the early days when oppression, suspicion, and imprisonment fell to the lot of the future Monarch. Miss Strickland often charms by her romantic treatment of the story, and perhaps she may nowadays be more valued as a writer than as a historian, though there can be no doubt of her qualifications in the latter capacity. The Eliza- bethan Age has. since Miss Strickland's day, attracted much closer investigation than she gave to it, and the discussion of the Queen's character and supposed intrigues has produced such differences of opinion among hard controversialists that the unprejudiced reader may find some difficulty in making up his mind on the subject. He could not, however, desire a more agréeabJ8 introduction to it than the present book, wherein Ida Ä. Taylor has exercised the function of editor with much discrimination. A new picture, a Hogarth, has just been added to the British Section of the National Gallery. The Hogarth is the portrait of James Quin, the actor, which was recently sold at Christie's when the Townshend heirlooms were dispersed. It Shows Quin nearly full face looking slightly up. wards, and wearing a wig and a light-coloured coat trimmed with gold lace. It has been placed with the other Hogarths in Room XIX. It is gratifying to know that the exhibition at the Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts is proving a great success. The attendance is large, and the total sales for seven weeks amount to close on F,4000, which is the highest in the institute reeordSt That clever artist, Miss Bessie MacNicol, whom fine Vanity was one of the best pictures at the International, has sold all her works on exhibition and among the latest pictures showing the red sea) is Mr. Beattie Brown's "Evening on the Tay;1* Sargent's well-known group the Wertheimer Children has been removed according to arrange- ment, but Frank Brangwyn's "Burial at Re* makes up tor that loss.