Charles William Kett Rubens (Classic Reprint)

Rubens (Classic Reprint)

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Excerpt from Rubens

Horace Walpole once said that it was necessary to read twenty books in order to write a life of Rubens. Since Walpole's days books have multiplied and historical documents have been discovered, arranged and calendared, in every capital of Europe. In order to write a complete life of Rubens now, it would be necessary to search through an immense mass of documents at the Hague, Brussels, Paris, Simancas, Vienna, and Mantua, besides carefully examining our own records. Neither time nor space would allow of this, if I had had the opportunity in other ways. All I have here attempted has been to give a resume of the facts discovered by others, a very large number of which have not only never appeared in English, but have not even been brought together until now.

Rubens has suffered from his twofold character and his polyglot acquirements. But few persons are interested alike in his artistic and his diplomatic career. I have wished to give a due weight to each view of his character as far as the limited space at my disposal would allow.

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