20 DECEMBER 1845, Page 11


The tribes of tourists who take the railway journey to Paris via Rouen, induced Mr. Burford to make sketches for a panoramic view of this picturesque old city: and, with the assistance of his able coadjutor Mr. Selous, he has produced a painting as finished and effective as any easel picture; though the objects are on such a scale that the visitors may fancy themselves to be actually standing on the handsome stone bridge from which the view is taken. Rouen is here exhibited under a different aspect from what we are familiar with in prints: the newest features of the place are the most conspicuous. The statue of Moliere, the suspension- bridge, the hotels on the quays, the railway terminus, gas-works, steam- boats, and all the gayety and elegance of a modern city, first catch the eye; the Seine with its fringe of poplars, and the broken outline of the hilly landscape, relieving the monotony of masses of building, where win- dows and chimnies predominate. The old narrow streets, with quaint gabled roofs almost meeting over the causeway, are only indicated bar glimpses here and there; and the chief architectural glories of the ancient city—the magnificent cathedral and the rich Gothic churches of St. Ouen and St. Maclou—are only visible by their spires peeping above the roofs of smart new houses. Of course it is impossible for a panorama— even were it a bird's-eye view—to show all the fine edifices of a place; and therefore we would suggest to Mr. Burford that he should paint sepa- rate little views of a few remarkable structures, and fit them up in the sides and corners of his staircases and lobbies, with magnifying-glasses before them, as at the Cosmorama. By this means, his visiters would be able to form a more full and complete idea of the place represented; and the crowds that fill the circular galleries would be distributed over the whole building. Such painting as Messrs. Burford and Selous put into their panoramas, would bear looking at through a magnifying medium. The pictorial effects of this panorama are beautiful and varied: the sharp outlines of the houses stand out clear against the bright smokeless atmo- sphere; while the verdure on the banks of the river, and the picturesque Seine boats with their huge rudders, enrich the surface of the water with richly-coloured reflections. The sky is sunny, the streets are alive frith people and traffic, and the whole scene is gay and animated.