Volltext: The life, studies and works of Benjamin West, Esq. president of The Royal Academy of London

Without being able totake any step in the busi- 
ness. In the mean time, the Shakspei-ian' 
Gallery was offered for sale ; and the gentlemen 
interested in this project raised a sum of money, 
by subscription, and purchased that building 
with the intention of making it the approach to 
a proposed national gallery.   
 From Mr. Percival the scheme met with a far 
different reception. He listened to the repre-' 
sentations -which Mr. West made to him with 
a repressive coldness, it might almost be said 
with indifference, had it not been marked with 
a decided feeling; for he seemed to consider 
the whole objects of the British Institution, and 
the reasons adduced in support of the claims 
which the interests of the arts had on govern- 
ment, as the visionary purposes of vain enthu- 
siasts. It was not within the small compass of 
that respectable individual's capacity to con- 
sider any generous maxim as founded in what 
he deemed wisdom, or to comprehend, that the 
welfare of nations could be promoted by any 
other means than precedents of office, decisigns 
of courts, and Acts of Parliament. An inci- 
N L11


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