Hind, Arthur Mayger

Full Name: 
Hind, Arthur Mayger
Date Born: 
1880
Date Died: 
1957
Place Born: 
Burton upon Trent, England, UK
Place Died: 
Henley-on-Thames, UK
Home Country: 
UK
Gender: 
male
Overview: 

Prints and drawings authority (especially Italian); Keeper of the Department of Prints, British Museum, 1933 -1945. Hind's father was Henry Robert Hind, a school principal, his mother, Sarah Mayger, and his grandfather the illustrator Robert Neal Hind (1817-1879). After attending the City of London School he entered Emmanuel College, Cambridge University, graduating with honors in 1902. Though music was a serious option, Hind chose the study of prints. He traveled to Dresden to study under the engraving history scholar Max Lehrs. Hind joined the Department of Prints and Drawings of the British Museum as an assistant (today termed assistant keeper) under Sidney Colvin, the Keeper. He assisted Colvin on the volume for engravers in England between the time of Henry VIII to the Commonwealth held in the department. The Museum published this catalog in 1905. In 1908 Hind wrote A Short History of Engraving and Etching, a highly popular primer which would run into numerous editions. In 1910 Colvin's department issued the important Catalogue of Early Italian Engravings in the British Museum, nearly completely produced by Hind. He undertook a catalog of Rembrandt's etchings in 1912 (a revised edition appearing in 1923) and the same year married Dorothy Alice Pakington (b. 1881/2). Hind also nurtured an interest in drawings. He conceived of catalogs documenting the Dutch and Flemish holdings in the British Museum, publishing a volume on Rembrandt and his school in 1915. During World War I, he served in the Army Service Corps in France between 1915 and 1918, rising to the rank of major. Hind was Slade professor of fine art at Oxford University from 1921 until 1927. The second volume on the Dutch and Flemish drawings, on Rubens and his school, appeared in 1923. Hind published a plates volume (illustrations) of the Museum's holdings of Claude Lorrain drawings in 1925, publishing an annotated list, among the first of such studies, a year later. For the 1930-1931 academic year he was Charles Eliot Norton professor at Harvard, delivering the Norton lectures on landscape design and Rembrandt. He was named Deputy Keeper in 1931. The following year his Rembrandt lectures at Harvard were published. Hind set out to write a companion volume to the Short History of Engraving and Etching on woodcuts, but the work grew so large that he issued it as a separate text, Introduction to a History of Woodcut, 1935, covering up until the fifteenth century in two volumes. In 1933 Laurence Binyon retired as keeper of the department and Hind succeeded him. He returned to his initial Italian catalog compiling a complete illustrated corpus Italian engravings of the fifteenth century in 1938. The second of the three volumes of his illustrated corpus Italian engravings was delayed by the war and only appeared in 1948. During World War II, Hind moved the bulk of the print collections of the Museum to the designated place of safekeeping in Aberystwath, Wales. Hind retired from the Department in 1945 and was succeeded by Hugh Popham, receiving an honorary LL. D. at Glasgow and appointed a Leverhulme research fellow the same year. Immediately he began researching his Engraving in England in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries; volume one appeared in 1952 but the set was not completed until after his death. Hind died at a nursing home in 1957. Hind was an acknowledged print scholar most famous, somewhat ironically, for his introductory book on prints, which contained artist's biographies as well as a narrative history. It was the entry point for most students of art foraying into print study for most of the 20th century. Although many of Hind's judgments in his print catalogs have been modified, Hind's conclusions still form the basis for scholarship in print research. The final chapter of Hind's 1932 book on Rembrandt includes an essay on Hind's artistic beliefs.

Selected Bibliography: 
Early Italian Engraving: A Critical Catalogue with Complete Reproduction of All the Prints Described. 7 vols. London: M. Knoedler, 1938-48; and Colvin, Sydney. Catalogue of early Italian Engravings Preserved in the Department of Prints and Drawings in the British Museum. London: British Museum, 1910; and Popham, Arthur E. Catalogue of drawings by Dutch and Flemish artists preserved in the Department of Prints and Drawings in the British Museum. 5 vols. London: British Museum, 1915-32; Rembrandt's etchings: an Essay and a Catalogue, with Some Notes on the Drawings. London: Methuen 1912, [American edition:] Rembrandt, with a Complete List of his Etchings. New York: F. A. Stokes, 1912; Rembrandt, being the Substance of the Charles Eliot Norton Lectures Delivered Before Harvard University, 1930-1931. London: Oxford University Press/H. Milford, 1932; A Short History of Engraving & Etching for the Use of Collectors and Students. London: A. Constable & Co., 1908.
Sources: 
Griffiths, A. ed., Landmarks in Print Collecting: Connoisseurs and Donors at the British Museum Since 1753. London: British Museum Press, 1996; [obituary:] Times (London) May 23 1957; [obituary:] Popham, Arthur E. "Arthur M. Hind." Burlington Magazine 99 (1957): 242.