transcribed from THE TIMES - Thursday 9th May 1867

We closed our first notice in the West Room, at Mr. Poynter's picture of the Israelites in Captivity, a work equally remarkable for its antiquarian research and its technical artistic merits. Such a picture as this, in the days when the academy was wide enough to find room for the talent of the time, as it arose, would at once have been secured the election of the painter to an Associateship. May we submit to the Academy that the present Exhibition establishes a very strong case for the application of their recent wise regulation, which removes the limit on the number of Associates? The election of half-a-dozen of our leading landscape painters, and as many of the most meritorious of the younger figure painters, would enhance the reputation of the Academy, remove an irritating sense of injustice in some quarters, and bear down by the forces of new blood, that sense of an undue proportion of mediocrity within the Academic pale which, as matters stand, gives rise to injurious comment. We are glad to find in this Exhibition not only Bellin's excellent engraving of Mr. Lucy's picture of Cromwell with his family and friends at Hampton Court, one of the best examples of English historical painting in our time, and, in the chief figure at least, sustaining comparison with Delaroche, but Lucy's smaller picture (445), from the period of the civil war, embarcation of John Hampden, Cromwell, and Pym for New England, intercepted by Order in Council. The painter who abides by the determination to treat grave historical incident gravely nowadays runs the risk of poor remuneration, whether is the way of pence or praise ; and Mr. Lucy is conspicuous among the courageous few who, in this cause, have braved the risk of small gain and slight recognition from the distributors of artistic distinctions and public employment. His picture of the Puritan leaders, arrested at the moment they were preparing to leave England in despair of the cause of civil and religious liberty at home, is hung too high for fair judgment.

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