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  The research archive of Gary W. Ewer regarding the history of the daguerreotype

On this day (September 3) in the year 1842, the following items appeared in "The Cambrian" (Swansea, Glamorganshire, Wales): - - - - - - - - - - Photographic Portraits - We have great satisfaction in referring our readers to another part of our paper, in which will be found Mons. Langlois's advertisement of the Photographic Likenesses, which are now being taken in the Royal Institution. We have compared Mons' Langlois's portraits with those taken in the Polytechnic Institution, London, and with others taken in some of the principal towns, and our conviction fortified by the opinions of others who are competent judges in such matters, is, that in point of spirit, in approximation of nature, to the life - for as to mere likeness there can with the Daguerreotype be, strictly speaking, no incorrect likeness - Mons. Langlois does not suffer by the comparison. We are inclined to think, that Mons. Langlois's profession, being that of a portrait painter, gives him considerable advantages even in this wondrous art of tracing the lineaments of the 'human face divine,' pencilled though they be by no mortal hand. We are induced to make these remarks at the present time for the benefit of our readers at a distance, who may visit Swansea during the ensuing weeks of amusements. We trust they will not forgo the opportunity thus presented to them of perpetuating the most faithful record of what they are, or of what the friends in whom they feel an interest are - a record to use the language of a philosophic friend, written by no mortal hand, but inscribed by the bright beams of Heaven's own Sun, and faithful as is the shadow to the substance. From our fellow townsmen Mons. Langlois has met that success which merit and enterprise so well deserve." (and in the advertisements:) Patented Photographic Portraits TAKEN DAILY AT THE ROYAL INSTITUTION, SWANSEA The attention of the Public is respectfully solicited to the beautiful Productions, acknowledged by Artists and other competent judges, to be superior to any yet produced by this wonderful Process. The operators being artists themselves, are enabled to add grace of attitude and proper distribution of light and shade to the individual likenesses, giving them additional life and character. the sitting occupies from 15 to 20 seconds, and the price is half-a-guinea. In London it is one guinea." (Thanks to Richard Morris of the UK for today's items.) -------------------------------------------------------------- 09-03-97

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