Excerpt from The Etchings of Rembrandt
The systematic study of the works of a great etcher is seldom undertaken by lovers of art who are not led to it by the requirements of a critic or a collector, and yet this systematic study, though it may seem tedious to the amateur, and... pedantic to the artist, and though it may be regarded with the most complete indifference by the public generally, has its own rewards to offer in the additional clearness which it imparts to the whole subject, and in the enhanced interest that every separate etching gains from being known in connection with the rest. This kind of study would be impossible for us Without the help of the minutely detailed information that the zealous industry of catalogue makers has accumulated for our use. We are, indeed, infinitely their debtors, for without their labours of love, extending, in some cases, over many years, and rewarded only by the appreciation of the few who know all that such toil involves, the student could never gain a comprehensive View of the total production of a great artist. Even if he had access to a complete collection, it would be impossible for him to know that it was complete.
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