James Egan, Mezzotint Engraver

(b. 1799, d. 1842)

Mezzotint Engraver

From A Dictionary of Irish Artists 1913

Was born of humble parentage in the county of Roscommon in 1799. As a boy he was employed by S. W. Reynolds, the mezzotint engraver, in London, at first as an errand-boy, but later in grounding plates for mezzotint. Leaving Reynolds he began business for himself in preparing plates for other engravers, and set himself to work to become an engraver himself. Without money or friends or any previous training in art, he worked industriously and endured many privations, but succeeded in his efforts in obtaining some employment as an engraver. But his health failed, and after some years of struggle and trying difficulties he died at Pentonville on 2nd October, 1842, aged 43. He left a wife and family, for whom a subscription was raised. His plates include:

Love's Reverie; after J. R. Herbert.

Abbot Boniface; after C. S. Newton.

The Morning after the Wreck; after C. Bentley.

The Study; after E. Stone.

The Mourner; after J. M. Moore.

The Young Wife; after S. J. Jones.

The Citation of Wycliffe; after S. J. Jones.

The Tribunal of the Inquisition; after S. J. Jones.

Portrait of John Lodge, Librarian at Cambridge; after Walmisley.

— Denvil, actor, as Manfred; after H. Farrer.

English Hospitality in the olden times; after J. G. Cattermole. His last and best plate.

Genealogical Tree of British Naval Victories; aquatint, after H. Innes.

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