This chapter focuses on the critical responses to 'sensibility', broached from the perspective of reception. It examines a range of critical constructions of the literary and cultural phenomenon of 'sensibility' from the late nineteenth century onwards, and uncovers some of the underlying moral, aesthetic and political agendas, and emotional attitudes, which have coloured its inscription as a category in literary history. The topic of sensibility has, of course, generated a great deal of critical commentary from the eighteenth century onwards, especially in the field of English literature in the last twenty-five years or so. The verbal evocation of the visual in the form of spectacles, scenes, tableaux, or images was a characterizing feature of novels of sensibility, and was recognized as such in the eighteenth century. In the eighteenth century, the relationship between the verbal and visual in aesthetic contexts was also understood by reference to Horace's much-revisited formula ut pictura poesis — the idea that poetry should be like painting.