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Full Online Book HomeNonfictionsBooks And Persons: Being Comments On A Past Epoch 1908-1911 - Henry Ospovat
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Books And Persons: Being Comments On A Past Epoch 1908-1911 - Henry Ospovat Post by :jallen001 Category :Nonfictions Author :Arnold Bennett Date :May 2012 Read :2700

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Books And Persons: Being Comments On A Past Epoch 1908-1911 - Henry Ospovat

(_14 Jan. '09_)

The death of that distinguished draughtsman and painter, Henry Ospovat, who was among the few who can illustrate a serious author without insulting him, ought not to pass unnoticed. Because an exhibition of his caricatures made a considerable stir last year it was generally understood that he was destined exclusively for caricature. But he was a man who could do several things very well indeed, and caricature was only one of these things. In Paris he would certainly have made a name and a fortune as a caricaturist. They have more liberty there. Witness Rouveyre's admirable and appalling sketch of Sarah Bernhardt in the current _Mercure de France_. I never met Ospovat, but I was intimate with some of his friends while he was at South Kensington. In those days I used to hear "what Ospovat thought" about everything. He must have been listened to with great respect by his fellow-students. And sometimes one of them would come to me, with the air of doing me a favour (as indeed he was) and say: "Look here. Do you want to buy something good, at simply no price at all?" And I became the possessor of a beautiful sketch by Ospovat, while the intermediary went off with a look on his face as if saying: "Consider yourself lucky, my boy!" I used even to get Ospovat's opinions on my books, now and then very severe. I wanted to meet him. But I never could. The youths used to murmur: "Oh! It's no use you _meeting him." They were afraid he was not spectacular enough. Or they desired to keep him to themselves, like a precious pearl. I pictured him as very frail, and very positive in a quiet way. He was only about thirty when he died last week.

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