A Prayer For Bread.
"Washington Allston, who stood at the head of American artists a half
century ago, was, at one time, so reduced by poverty, that he locked his
studio, in London, one day, threw himself on his knees and prayed for a
loaf of bread for himself and wife. While thus engaged, a knock was
heard at the door, which the artist hastened to open. A stranger
inquired for Mr. Allston, and was anxious to know who was the fortunate
purchaser of the painting of the 'Angel Uriel,' which had won the prize
at the exhibition of the Royal Academy. He was told that it was not
sold. 'Where is it to be found?' 'In this very room,' said Allston,
producing a painting from a corner and wiping off the dust. 'It is for
sale, but its value has not been adequately appreciated, and I would not
part with it.' 'What is its price?' 'I have done affixing any nominal
sum. I have always so far exceeded any offers, I leave it to you to name
the price.' 'Will four hundred pounds be an adequate recompense?' 'It is
more than I ever asked for it.' 'Then the painting is mine,' said the
stranger, who introduced himself as the Marquis of Stafford, and, from
that time, became one of Mr. Allston's warmest friends and patrons."
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