Page:English Caricaturists and Graphic Humourists of the nineteenth century.djvu/313

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forward, which we have done in an eminent degree, we must engage first-rate ability when public patronage is bestowed so liberally, as it now is upon this periodical. He ought therefore not to be nettled at our having obtained a superior artist." The public, however, were not to be gulled; they perfectly well knew that Isaac Robert Cruikshank was an inferior artist in every respect to Seymour, and had not forgotten the tribute which the foolish editor had previously paid to the talents and ability of the latter. Conduct like this could only recoil on the head of the person who was injudicious and spiteful enough to be guilty of it. The "Notices to Correspondents" in subsequent numbers continued to be filled with references and allusions to Seymour, dictated by a malice which was alike silly and childish. They are not worthy of repetition here, and we must refer the reader for them to the numbers of "Figaro in London" of 2Oth September and 15th November, 1834, or (if he have not access to its pages) to the short biographical notice prefixed to the latest edition of the "Sketches" by Mr. Henry G. Bohn. We have no doubt whatever that the interval between these dates was employed in fruitless endeavours on the part of À Beckett to arrange terms with the artist, who, however, steadily refused to give the failing publication the indispensable benefit of his assistance. Left as it were to its own resources, the circulation, in spite of the graphic help accorded by Robert Cruikshank, steadily declined, and À Beckett finally retired from the editorship and proprietorship on the 27th of December, 1834. Seymour wielded a far more effectual weapon of offence than any which A Beckett possessed, and dealt him blows which at this time and in his then circumstances must have been keenly felt. One of Seymour's satires is aimed specially at the "Notices to Correspondents" already mentioned, and shows us a heavy, vulgar fellow seated at his desk, habited in a barber's striped dressing-gown à la Figaro. His features are distorted with passion, for he has received a letter the contents of which are anything but flattering, addressed "To the Editor of the nastiest thing in London." This sketch bears the following descriptive title: "An editor in a small way, after pretending a great deal about his corre-