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Jonathan Buttall (1752–1805) by Thomas Gainsborough, c. 1770 [The blue boy] courtesy of the Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens, San Marino, California

Article

Buttall, Jonathan (1752–1805), ironmonger, the possible subject of Thomas Gainsborough's painting The Blue Boy, was the eldest of the three sons of Jonathan Buttall (d. 1768), ironmonger, and Elizabeth, née Higgins (d. 1780). He was probably born at the family's house in ...

Article

Hastings, Thomas (fl. 1803–1837), customs official and artist, whose origins are unknown, had been, according to his own statement of 1813, a captain and assistant quartermaster-general in the army. This position frequently required drawing skills for surveying duties, but Hastings has not been traced in either the British or the ...

Article

Kilburn, William (1745–1818), artist and calico printer, was born on 1 November 1745, at Capel Street, Dublin, the only son of Samuel Kilburn, architect of that city. He showed an early talent for drawing, and was apprenticed to John Lisson, an English calico printer with a large works at ...

Article

L. H. Cust

revised by Douglas Fordham

Nixon, John Colley (bap. 1755, d. 1818), merchant and artist, was the son of Robert Nixon (d. 1794), a successful Irish merchant working in Uphall and Tokenhouse, London, and his wife, Lucretia, née Wilson (bap. 1728). Details from his childhood remain obscure. In his memoirs ...

Article

L. H. Cust

revised by Mark Pottle

Sharples, James (1825–1893), blacksmith and artist, was born on 4 September 1825 in Wakefield, Yorkshire, one of the thirteen children of James Sharples (c.1793–1855), blacksmith and wrought iron worker, and his wife, Margaret (c.1797–1854). Both Sharples's grandfathers were blacksmiths, and ...

Article

Smart, George (1775/6–1846), tailor and textile artist, was famously associated with the village of Frant in Sussex, near Tunbridge Wells, living there most of his life and often being referred to as ‘the tailor of Frant’. The George Smart who was buried in ...