The Dickensian Aspect

This portrait of Hezekiah Flint, painted by M. K. Kellogg hangs in our 12th floor lecture hall.  Based solely on his name, if Hezekiah Flint had been a character in a Dickens novel, he probably would have been rich and mean.  In real life, he (or perhaps some other Hezekiah Flint- Nemo Wolfe has the afternoon off so I can’t say for sure) was one of the original settlers of the Northwest Territory, which later became Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconson, and part of Minnesota.  I assume he had to have had a considerable mean streak to survive on the frontier, and he must have ended up with some money if he could afford to have his portrait painted, so this looks like a clear win for Dickens.

I’m sure you’ve noticed that he looks a little walleyed.  That’s becuase back in old timey days, if you were getting your portrait painted and you moved one eye even a tiny bit- if you so much as blinked, even- during the months it took to finish the painting, you messed the whole thing up.

-Norm De Plume

Published in: on October 17, 2008 at 4:18 pm  Leave a Comment  

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