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The explanation of the propensity of the English people to portrait painting is to be found in their relish for a Fact. Let a man do the grandest things, fight the greatest battles, or be distinguished by the most brilliant personal heroism, yet the English people would prefer his portrait to a painting of the great deed. The likeness they can judge of; his existence is a Fact. But the truth of the picture of his deeds they cannot judge of, for they have no imagination.

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A bit about Benjamin Haydon ...

Benjamin Robert Haydon (January 26, 1786 - June 22, 1846) was an English historical painter and writer.

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