HUSSEY, PHILIP

(b. 1713, d. 1783)

Portrait Painter

From A Dictionary of Irish Artists 1913

Was born at Cloyne, in the county of Cork, in 1713, the son of a clothier in that town. Owing to his father's conduct his mother separated from him soon after her son's birth and lived with her own relations. She was a clever and accomplished woman and a good musician, especially as a player on the violin. As a boy Philip was sent to sea, and was three times shipwrecked. His first attempts in art were drawings from the figure-heads of ships; but in time, by his own efforts, he was able to attain to some proficiency as an artist, and practised as a portrait painter under the patronage of Lord Chancellor Bowes. He twice visited England, and improved himself by the study of the works of the Old Masters. He made several copies of a head of Cromwell, by Lely, which he disposed of advantageously in Ireland. On his second visit to England he was introduced to the Prince of Wales, and made many friends who endeavoured to persuade him to remain in London. He was a man of varied accomplishments, a botanist and a musician, and his house was frequented by the literary men and artists of Dublin. As an artist he painted with refined taste and judgment, and his portraits were esteemed as strong and faithful likenesses. He died at an advanced age in his house in Earl Street, Dublin, in June, 1783. In his will, dated 17th January, 1783, and proved 11th July following, he describes himself as "of the city of Dublin, painter," and leaves five pounds a year to Mary Lear, sister of Jacob Ennis, the painter (q.v.). The following works by him have been met with:

St. George Caulfield, Chief Justice. [King's Inns.]

David La Touche, Formerly at Bellevue, Co.Wicklow. Sold in 1906.

Edward O'Brien, 3rd son of Sir Edward O'Brien, 2nd Bart. [Earl of Inchiquin, Dromoland.]

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