1 JANUARY 1831, Page 23

Richard Cceur de Lion and Saladin at the Battle of


Battle pieces are at best uninteresting pictures, but we always seem to have seen Mr. COOPER'S before : his sleek horses and glossy heroes, of the same satiny texture, and in similar attitudes, with only a differ.. ence in their costume and trappings. In the present picture, King Richard is showing off as the principal figure, with starting eyes and. stage energy, wielding a ponderous battle-axe, with such a conscious air as we may suppose a young cornet would assume in going through the sword exercise before his sister. Saladin looks a craven groom ; and his scale-armour, showing a prodigious mass of muscle underneath, is more like the skin of a serpent, while the chain-armour of his anta- gonist resembles worsted net in its texture and elasticity. The horse- flesh and saddlery is unexceptionable, as is always the case in Mr. COOPER'S pictures. Saladin's cap is unmeaning as well as tasteless ; and he fights with a small straight sword. The picture, as a composition, is clumsy, laboured, and deficient in keeping. The clouds have the ap- ppeance of smoke—we do not know if it is so intended. The mezzotint by Mr. GILLER is clear and brilliant, and merits great praise. Mr. COOPER paints horses beautifully, but we wish that he would not think it necessary to his reputation to prove that he cannot paint men upon them, by getting up tame battle pictures, and giving them historical titles.