or: The Birth of Literature ~ or: The Genus of Genius ~ or: The Species of Literature (‽)
Re: A Howard Pyle decorative panel
In 1905 Howard Pyle painted a group of decorative panels for his own residence. The theme he chose was "The Arts," the various branches of creative activity, such as painting, music, literature, and dance.
|Genius of Literature, 1905 - Howard Pyle|
|Genus of literature, 1909 - snapped at delart.org|
"Genus of Literature" …reading that title, given at delart.org, left me perplexed. If you ask, 'Why?', please continue~
The article, The Field of Art: Mural Painting In This Country Since 1898 (Scribner's Magazine volume XL, July~Dec 1906), provides the titles: The Genius of Literature ; The Genius of Art ; The Genius of Music ; The Genius of Drama. ~ Apt titles for decorative works.
|page from vol XL July-Dec 1906 - Scribner's magazine, Volume 40|
The 1921 bibliography, Howard Pyle: A Record of His Illustrations and Writings by Willard S Morse and Gertrude Brincklé, published by The Wilmington Society of the Fine Arts, changes the titles to: The Birth of Literature ; The Genus of Art ; Music ; Drama. ~ Dubious, odd and generic. Hey! What's in a name?
|clipping from Howard Pyle: A Record of His Illustrations and Writings|
genus - noun ( pl. genera |ˈjenərə| or genuses) Biology ~ (cut 'n' paste)
a grouping of organisms having common characteristics distinct from those of other such groupings. The genus is a principal taxonomic category that ranks above species and below family, and is denoted by a capitalized Latin name, e.g., Leo.
• (in philosophical and general use) a class of things that have common characteristics and that can be divided into subordinate kinds.
~ Ah so desu ka. If the subject of each panel was a genre of literature, Genus of Literature would be the overarching title, and each panel would have a subtitle, i.e., Poetry, Novella, Haiku, et cetera. That's not the case.
|Genius of Shakespeare by Théodore Chasseriau|
Genius - ( pl. genii |ˈjēnēˌī|) (in some mythologies) a guardian spirit associated with a person, place, or institution.
~ 'Spirit' being the more popular choice: The Spirit of the Beehive ; Spirit of St. Louis ; The Spirit of Radio ; Spirit of Liberty ; The Spirit of the Revolution ; or those 3 Spirits: The Ghost of Christmas Past, et cetera.
|1793 - The Genius of Literature presenting her Pupils to Minerva|
Minerva - The Roman goddess of poetry, wisdom, et cetera.
|Minerva Conducting the the Genius of Arts to Immortality - Pierre Paul Prud'hon (1758-1823)|
Arcadia - an idyllic, unspoiled, harmonious wilderness.
shepherd - a person who tends and rears sheep. (or in French, berger)
|Les Bergers d’Arcadie by Nicolas Poussin (sans frame)|
Idyll - In the visual arts, an idyll is a painting depicting the same sort of subject matter to be found in idyllic poetry, often with peasant life as its central theme.
|Idyll c.1880 - Lord Leighton|
Sappho - an Ancient Greek poet, born on the island of Lesbos.
|Sappho by Frederick Arthur Bridgman|
|(Lydia) Amanda Brewster Sewell (1859 - 1926) Sappho, 1891|
A possible title if it were an illustration/easel-painting ~ "An Arcadian Idyll: Sappho Reciting Before Shepherds"
|Howard Pyle, An Arcadian Idyll: Sappho Reciting Before Shepherds, 1905|