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Hayter, Charles, 1761–1835

Perspective explained in a series of dialogues between the author's children George, Ann, Eliza and John.

Additional Title(s):

Introduction to perspective, adapted to the capacities of youth

Introduction to perspective, adapted to the capacities of youth. Selections

circa 1820.
Physical Description:
1 v. (120 p.) : ill. ; 16 cm.
Rare Books and Manuscripts
NC750 .H48 1813a
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Fund
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Copyright Status:
Copyright Not Evaluated
Archives & Manuscripts
The artist Charles Hayter (1761-1835) is best known as a painter of miniatures, professor of perspective and drawing to Charlotte, princess of Wales, and as the author of several manuals of art instruction, including An introduction to perspective, adapted to the capacities of youth, in a series of pleasing and familiar dialogues (1813), and A new practical treatise on the three primitive colours (1828). His Introduction to perspective included "A compendium of genuine instruction in the art of drawing and painting", with advice on the use of pencil, chalks and drawing paper, proportion of the human figure, proportion of the head, outline drawing, and shading and coloring. This work was specifically aimed at women and became a common text used in drawing academies for young ladies.
Caption title.
Bound in contemporary marbled boards.
Manuscript copy, circa 1820, of selections from Charles Hayter's An introduction to perspective, adapted to the capacities of youth, in a series of pleasing and familiar dialogues, between the author's children (first published in London, 1813). The manuscript is copied in a neat hand in pen and brown ink throughout and also reproduces many of the illustrations (again in pen and brown ink) from the original printed edition. The identity of the copyist is not explicitly stated, though it is very likely the work of a young lady and may be attributable to a Harriet Hennell, whose autograph appears on the first page. The manuscript was almost certainly bound after copying, as it contains papers of mixed watermarks, one of which is dated 1820. Pages for the textual portions are on laid paper; illustrations are usually on wove paper, as was common for artwork.
The manuscript copies about two-thirds of the original published version. Hayter's work was issued in new, enlarged, editions in 1815 and 1820. All of the text of the present manuscript, however, is included in the first edition (1813), so it is likely that the manuscript was copied from the first edition. The copyist appears to revise Hayter's text in the aim of concision, omitting portions that seem incidental or extra. The text that remains conserves the essential artistic instruction offered by Hayter.
Hayter's illustrations are reproduced in varying degrees of fidelity. In some, the copyist of the manuscript illustrates less detail and shading. In others, the printed version is embellished upon, as in the manuscript's "plate" V, where the copyist adds an elaborate fireplace and more "romantic" furnishings, with all sorts of decorative and domestic touches, including curtains, fire screen, window, vases, glass ornaments, and candlesticks; and in "plate" XII, where the comparatively plain dressed woman depicted in the printed version is here given elaborate 18th century clothing--dress with lace, filmy sleeves, feathered headdress, full skirts, strands of beads, and laced bodice.
Subject Terms:
Drawing -- Technique.
Hayter, Charles, 1761-1835. Introduction to perspective, adapted to the capacities of youth.
Hennell, Harriet.
Painting -- Technique.
Perspective -- Technique.
Proportion (Art) -- Technique.
Ink drawings.
Hennell, Harriet.

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