On Art and Artists

av William Blake.

"Nebuchadnezzar" av William Blake.


( i )

Degrade first the Arts if you'd mankind degrade,

Hire idiots to paint with cold light and hot shade,

Give high price for the worst, leave the best in disgrace,

And with labours of ignorance fill every place.

( v )

When nations grow old, the Arts grow cold,

And Commerce settles on every tree;

And the poor and the old can live upon gold,

For all men are poor, aged sixty-three.

( viii )

You say their pictures well painted be,

And yet they are blockheads you all agree:

Thank God! I was never sent to school

To be flogg'd into following the style of a fool.

The errors of a wise man make your rule,

Rather than the perfections of a fool.