Puslapio vaizdai

teriorated in many insects, through either the degraded instinct of the parent or the less fastidious appetite in the caterpillar offspring. I will append a few instances, some of which indeed will be found interesting and instructive. In the examples of the large Crecropia, Polyphemus, Prometheus, and Luna moths, as well as in a number of butterflies, it is true that the power of discernment seems to have been lost, the selections of food plants extending into various families; though even here it must be remembered that we are taking a thousand insects as a unit, there being a strong probability that any one individual parent may yet be found true to a particular botanical affinity to which its brood is intrusted, the various peculiarities being, as it were, the hereditary result of some confusion of Babel in the remote past. The Saturnia lo belies the great show of "bull's eyes" upon its wings, being blindly indiscriminate. But

what do we find in the instance of the Monarch or Archippus butterfly, the protégé of the milkweeds ? Its black and yellow banded caterpillar is found on all the six species of New England Asclepias if we look with sufficient patience, though chiefly upon the common silkweed. It is a faithful nursling of this lactescent tribe. On

one occasion, however, I found it thriving on the dogbane, a similarly milky-juiced plant. But what is the fiat of the human botanical judges? The dogbane is not included in the milkweeds, though it immediately precedes them in the botanical sequence, and certain affinities are readily traceable between the two orders,

both plants having milky sap, opposite, entire leaves, long pods, silky seeds,
and other more intricate resemblances. Moreover, looking a little further into
the subject, we find that, while now separated in classification, the earlier
botanists had included the plant with the milkweeds, from which it was
withdrawn only after much scholarly discussion. Clearly the antecedent
classification of the butterfly should have been respected at the hands of
the learned disputants : the dogbane was linked with the milkweed eons
before the world knew a human botanist. When the writer's botany ap-
pears, this priority of Danais Archippus, Ph. D., D. D., F. B. S., etc., will
be duly recognized.

I have never seen this caterpillar on the closely
allied periwinkle, but would almost expect to find it
there, even as I once observed the butterfly sug-
gestively hovering about a vine of Hoya, or wax-
plant, a cultivated exotic trained about a porch,
but which is a true asclepiad. A somewhat
parallel instance of botanical priority is
to be seen in the Parnassius Apollo
butterfly, the beautiful sylph of the
Swiss Alps; member of a boreal tribe
rarely found below an elevation
of 1500 feet; lover of the moun-
tains, as its name implies; and one
of which, pictured at the right of
my Alpine design, I observed among
the Alpine cowslips on the summit of
Righi Culm. The food plant of this insect,
according to the authorities, is confined
to the saxifrages, a tribe of plants compris-
ing a large number of Alpine species.
I learn also that the caterpillars are some-

times found on a species of sedum, - a stone-crop,- two

families distinctly separated in the botanies, though follow

ing each other in Gray's sequence; and research further

shows that De Candolle originally traced

the closest affinity between these two orders.

It is not on record whether Apollo gave

him the hint. Our Painted Lady

is another interesting exception, as showing

a dual botanical mission in selecting the plants

of two natural orders (Composita and Malva

cea) and never going outside of them, represent

ing, doubtless, an hereditary choice in each given brood,

rather than mixed impartiality in one. The caterpillar is

quite commonly found upon thistles of all kinds, construct

ing a web-tent hung from the spiny points of the leaves, whence

it emerges at night to feed. The Phaeton butterfly of

my illustration is partial to the Figwort family, its list of

selections chiefly comprising the turtlehead, toad-flax, scrophu

laria, moth mullein, and painted cup. The latter, with the scarlet leaves

posing as blossoms, no one but an expert would think of associating with the

other plants mentioned. But I learn from Scudder that this caterpillar

is also "found on the honeysuckle : a poser this in truth, were it not

that it seems a clear case of heedlessness—an egg that was left while the

butterfly was sipping the honey tubes, of course. My experience has never

disclosed the weird-looking eye-spotted caterpillars of the Troilus

butterfly, or blue swallow-tail, upon any other foliage than sassa

fras and spice-wood, the only two northern species of the family Lau

raced, upon which it conceals itself in the neatly folded leaf. And

yet I see that some collectors have found it also on the prickly ash,

hop-tree (Ptelea), and syringa. Concerning the last mentioned I can

offer no explanation, but the other two ex




ceptions — both in the Rue family have a somewhat interesting significance taken in connection with the insect next considered. The ailantus silk-worm, introduced into this country from China about twenty years ago, and now very common in certain regions, for years was not known to swerve in its allegiance to its own companion, “ tree of heaven,” from which it is named, and which had long been introduced here. On the basis of the facts already set forth does any one doubt that if its favorite food plant were suddenly exterminated there

would be a winged stampede, as it were, to the prickly ash and the hop-tree, our only two native allies to the ailantus ? But what are the singular facts ? The moth, I am told by careful observers, has quite recently proved fickle to its original diet, and yet ignores the kindred plants. As a naturalized foreigner, under new conditions, it has concluded to “do as the Romans do,” and out of compliment takes the lead of its closest insect ally, our Prometheus moth, the favorite selections of which are the sassafras and its

relative the spice-wood, upon both of which the ailantus caterpillar is now occasionally found. There certainly seems to be some occult affinity between these two orders of plants, Lauracea and Rue, which the botanists have not discovered.

Here among the Alpen peaks of our country we may learn a lesson from antiquity in the example of, if not the most beautiful, certainly in many respects the most interesting, of butterflies. Much has been written concerning this strange lover of the cold. I will quote a recent reference of Grant Allen: “On and near the summit of Mount Washington a small community of butterflies belonging to an old glacial and arctic species still lingers over a very small area where it has held its own for the 80,000 years that have elapsed since the termination of the great ice age. The actual summit of the mountain rises to a height of 6293 feet, and the butterflies do not range lower than the 5000 feet line.

Again, from Mount Washington to
Long's Peak in Colorado the dis-

tance amounts to 1800 miles, while from the White Mountains to Hopedale in Labrador, where the same butterflies first appear, makes a bee-line of fully a thousand miles. In the intervening districts there are no insects of the same species. Hence we must conclude that a few butterflies left behind in the retreating main guard of their race on that one New Hampshire peak have gone on for thousands and thousands of years producing eggs, and growing from caterpillars

into full-fedged insects without once effecting a cross with the remainder of their congeners among the snows of the Rocky Mountains or in the chilly plains of sub-arctic America. So far as they themselves know, they are the only representatives of their kind now remaining on the whole earth — left behind like the ark on Ararat amid the helpless ruins of an antediluvian world.” For 200,000 years, according to geological data, these boreal broods must have wooed the frozen seas. Driven southward by the overwhelming ice, companions of the verdant fringe of the vast glacier and following in its retreat, they were at length beguiled by remnant ice fields lodged in the great gulfs of the Presidential range, and at last stranded among the furrowed peaks.



For years this butterfly — in the foreground of my Alpine design— was supposed to be confined to Mount Washington; but, as mentioned above, it has disclosed itself on other distant summits. It is also credited to Mount Monadnock, and I think revealed itself to me on the peak of Mount Lafayette, though decoying me beyond the limits of prudence, and thus defeating capture or even perfect identification.

Who shall question that through the ages, as now, this mountain sprite has been true to the sedges upon which its broods are found, even as it is still alike, in the color of its wings, to the everlasting rock among which it hibernates ?

W. Hamilton Gibson.



(ITALIAN OLD MASTERS.) T is difficult to separate guided and still more largely limited the di

with absolute certainty, rection of art. Henceforward the tendency in the revival, or rather of the progress of art is towards the pretransformation, of art dominance of the purely artistic element over with which the name of the subject-a change which, when we come Masaccio is connected, to translate it in terms of modern art philosothe part which belongs phy, is of enormous import. It means the to him from that which gradual elimination of the purely devotional is due to his master aim of the painter, the gradual introduction

Masolino; for that there of his personality, and the study of art for art's was a certain common quality is evident from sake. The purely ecstatic form of art was to the disputes which have arisen over the share disappear with Fra Angelico, who carried it taken by each in the works ascribed to them. to the height which always leads to reaction There is a curious parallel between Masaccio and neglect--a neglect partly due to the reacand Raphael in this relation to their masters, tion and partly to the failure of his imitators to in the important positions they hold in the his- satisfy the sentiment awakened by the master. tory of art, and in their early deaths. The es- Masaccio was born in 1402. He was the pecial contribution of Masolino to the art of son of Ser Giovanni di Simone Guidi, and at Masaccio appears to be the frank study of the the age of nineteen was enrolled in the guild nude and a direct reference to nature for the of speziali, which now would be called that details of his figures; or, to use the words of of the apothecaries; the business of the speCavalcaselle," he (Masolino] was equally care-ziali being to prepare the prescriptions of the less of the traditional garb of time-honored physician and hypothetically to compose the scriptural figures; and his personages are colors of which the artist was to make use, dressed in vast caps and turbans, coats and as in those days the color-man did not exist. tight-fitting clothes, spoiling by their over- Masaccio registered in the guild of painters weight or inelegant cut the effect of the finely in 1424. studied heads, the delicate hands and feet, His chief work was the decoration in fresco which he so carefully imitated from nature.” of the Brancacci Chapel in the Church of the But this in general means that, possibly from Carmine at Florence; and its importance in a lack of ideal power, Masolino fell back on the history of art may be judged from the fact nature to an extent that before him was un- that at one and the same time Michael Angelo, known, and by the sharpness of his innovation Raphael, and Leonardo da Vinci were engaged unsettled the authority of the artistic traditions in studying these frescos, which indeed have which had from the days of Giotto largely been the study of artists of all succeeding gen1 Fra Angelico did not die till thirty years after

erations. The only other probable work of Masaccio. The date of Masolino's death is not known; Masaccio's, and the earliest, is in a little chapel but it was not much later than that of Masaccio. in S. Clemente at Rome, and consists of a series

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of frescos devoted mainly to the history of St. throw Vasari's testimony overboard, and in the Catherine of Alexandria. Here one sees at once details of some of the compositions there are the break with the art of preceding generations. certain coincidences with Masaccio's work in “The Crucifixion,” which occupies the wall the Brancacci Chapel which are too clear to opposite the entrance, is a vast, scattered com- leave much doubt that the two chapels were position with a distinct impress of an effort to painted by the same artist.1 represent an imaginative realization of the

The fainting Virgin in the group at the foot event as it occurred. The motive is so evi- of the cross, afterwards imitated by Perugino, is dently due to the naturalistic tendency of in distinct violation of the orthodox traditions Masolino that it is not surprising that this and of the Crucifixion; for it is not admitted by the the other pictures in the chapel have been at- Roman Catholic Church that the Virgin fainted, tributed to the master instead of to the pupil; as she is supposed to bear the full weight of but the technical grounds for assigning them the misery that had fallen on her, while her to Masaccio are too strong to permit us to insensibility would have been a partial and

1 The relation of Masaccio to his master Masolino sculptors and painters since Masaccio's day' have been is so intimate, and so much controversy exists concern- studying there. He goes on to give a long list of names ing the identification of their work, that we give place of such painters, including Michelangelo and other to the following paragraphs from Dr. J. P. Richter's personal friends of his. (See Vol. I., p. 411.) Therenotes on Vasari (London: George Bell & Sons, 1885). sore the tradition about the authorship of that highly Dr. Richter says of Vasari's sketch of Masolino: “The esteemed monument must have been uninterrupted. description of this great artist's long career is very Again, the interest by which three generations of great short and certainly incomplete. Late researches have painters had been led to take the fresco-paintings of brought to light valuable information concerning events the Brancacci Chapel as the best models for their own of Masolino's life, of which Vasari seems to have been studies must have been too lively to admit of such seri. unaware; and, what is still more important, the discov- ous blunders as the said theory would involve. Howery of two extensive wall-decorations, authenticated by ever, if we were to admit sor a moment that Masolino's the artist's signature, now enable us to study closely collaboration at the Brancacci Chapel was not sufficiently the style of this artist's works, which have very often evident, it would be vain to enter into a discussion upon been confounded with those of his far-famed pupil the subject, if there were no other monuments of MasoMasaccio.

lino's style than those described by Vasari, for all the “ Many of the details of Masolino's life can now be works by his hand enumerated by the biographer have proved to be unfounded, but this does not in the least perished since, with the exception of the Brancacci invalidate the writer's general statements about the Chapel. Even here only two pictures can at present artist's career, of which he appears to us to speak with be identified with his descriptions. more justice than many writers on art, even at the “ But some forty years ago, when the whitewash was present day, feel inclined to admit. According to the taken off the wall of the collegiate church at Castiglione views of Messrs. Crowe and Cavalcaselle, the merits d'Olona, in the province of Como, between Varese and of this painter would come to very little when com- Milan, it was found that the choir was covered by pared with his defects. According to their theory, fresco paintings exhibiting the signature, · Masolinvs Masolino had no share in the execution of the cele- de Florentia Pinsit.' The following subjects are here brated wall-paintings of the Brancacci Chapel in the represented, the figures being nearly life-size: “The Church of the Carmine at Florence; and the apparent Nativity of Christ,' • The Annunciation, The Corodiscrepancies of style, which have always been noticed nation of the Virgin,' • The Marriage of the Virgin,' by those art-students who have studied the wall-paint- and • The Adoration of the Magi.' All these composiings in question on the spot, are to be explained as tions are placed in triangles above the spectator's head. varieties of style in one and the same artist, Masaccio. On the perpendicular walls we find representations of Instead of producing any proofs of this somewhat vague the ‘Entombment of the Virgin.' The two large pichypothesis, they repeatedly point to the difference of tures at the sides have been described as representing Raphael's manner, when under the influence of Peru- scenes of the life of St. Laurentius; however, in the gino, and when working independently. (See Italian opinion of the present writer, they illustrate the life edition, - Storia della Piitura in Italia.' 'Firenze: 1883. and martyrdom of St. Stephen. This church was founded Vol. II., pp. 261, 282, 292, 303.) But we may safely in 1422 by the Cardinal Branda, of Castiglione. The say that such a comparison is not to the point, inas. date of its completion may be conjectured from the inmuch as there is no evidence to show that the quite scription on a fine high-relief on the portal giving the exceptional and peculiar deviations, to which Raphael's year 1428. The sepulchral monument of the cardinal art was subjected for some short period, are likely to in the choir bears the date 1443. He, no doubt, was have been foreshadowed in the case of Masaccio. Ac- Masolino's employer not only in Castiglione, but most cording to Messrs. Crowe and Cavalcaselle, Masolino probably also at Rome, as will be seen in the notes to was incapable of producing such fine and grand paint. Vasari's Life of Masaccio.' Close to the collegiate ings as have heretofore borne his name, and we believe, church is the small baptistery, which is entirely covon good grounds, supported by the testimony not only ered by fresco-paintings by Masolino, representing of Vasari, but also of so early a writer as Albertini in scenes from the life and martyrdom of St. John the bis • Notes on the Statues and Pictures at Florence,' Baptist. On the ceiling are busts of the Fathers of the published in 1510. In this work the following passage Church and of prophets. Here occurs the date 1435. occurs: “The [fresco-work in the] chapel of the Bran. If these figures can be relied upon as correct (the writ. cacci is half by his [ Masaccio's] hand, half by the hand ing is apparently of a later date, but it may only be a of Masolino, with the exception of the “Crucifixion of subsequent restoration of the original), it would follow St. Peter,” which is by Filippo [ Filippino Lippi]. And that the pictures in the baptistery were about seven here we feel justified in saying thai if the testimony years later than the decoration of the collegiate church. of tradition in art history is worth anything, it must be A close study of these imposing and very impressive in this instance. Vasari says of the famous wall-paint. pictures enables us to state positively that the charac. ings in the Brancacci Chapel, that “all the most celebrated ieristics of style are here precisely the same as in the

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