Hudson's Statue (No. 7 from Latter-Day Pamphets)


by Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881)


(find the sooterkin)

But farther still, and supposing the first question perfectly disposed of, there comes a second, grave too, though much less peremptory: Is this Statue of yours a worthy commemoration of a sacred man? Is it so excellent in point of Art that we can, with credit, set it up in our market-places as a respectable approach to the Ideal? Or, alas, is it not such an amorphous brazen sooterkin, bred of prurient heat and darkness, as falls, if well seen into, far below the Real? The Real, if you will stand by it, is respectable. The coarsest hob-nailed pair of shoes, if honestly made according to the laws of fact and leather, are not ugly: they are honest, and fit for their object; the highest eye may look on them without displeasure, nay with a kind of satisfaction. This rude packing-case, it is faithfuly made; square to the rule, and formed with rough and ready strength against injury; -- fit for its use; not a pretentious hypocrisy, but a modest serviceable fact; whoever pleases to look upon it, will find the image of a humble manfulness in it, and will pass on with some infinitesimal impulse to thank the gods.

Source: VictorianWeb.Org