Sir Thomas Alfred Jones, Portrait Painter

(b. ? 1823, d. 1893)

Portrait Painter

From A Dictionary of Irish Artists 1913

Sir Thomas Alfred Jones. Picture, by Himself; in Royal Hibernian Academy.

The date of his birth is usually given as 1823, and in the matriculation register in Trinity College he is entered as the son of "Thomas Jones." But there is no evidence that either of these statements is correct; he was, in fact, a deserted child whose parentage was unknown, and he was found and taken charge of by the Archdale family and brought up in their house in Kildare Place. Mr. Archdale and his sisters were well known in Dublin for their charity and philanthropy—he was called "Squire Allworthy," which perhaps may account for the child receiving the name of "Thomas Jones." The "Alfred" was a later addition, probably by Jones himself. Showing signs of artistic talent the boy was placed as a pupil in the Royal Dublin Society's School in 1833, and in 1841 he exhibited a picture in the Royal Hibernian Academy, "Vision of the Kings, a subject from Macbeth." He entered Trinity College on the 14th October, 1842, but left without taking his degree, and in 1846 went abroad and spent about three years in travel on the Continent. Returning to Dublin he settled down to his profession as an artist, and in 1849 sent two drawings, "Portraits of Children of William Gregory," and "Italian Peasants," to the Royal Hibernian Academy. He exhibited again in 1851 and 1856, and thence forward was a regular exhibitor.

His early works were small figure subjects, most of them drawings in water-colour and pastel, for which he found a ready sale; but he ultimately confined himself to portrait painting in oil, in which he achieved success; and after the death of Catterson Smith had almost a monopoly of portrait painting in Ireland. He was elected an Associate of the Royal Hibernian Academy on 16th January, 1860, and a Member the same year under the new Charter. On the retirement of Catterson Smith he was elected on the 22nd June, 1869, his successor in the Presidency of the Academy, and in April, 1880, he was knighted by the Lord Lieutenant, the Duke of Marlborough, the first President of the Academy to receive that honour. Dignified and urbane, and popular in Dublin society, he made an admirable President, and was unremitting in his efforts to advance the interests of the Academy. For some time he suffered from ill-health, and he died at his residence, 41 Morehampton Road, on 10th May, 1893, and was buried at Mount Jerome. He was twice married; first to Susan Lucinda, daughter of William Casey of Seafield, County Clare, who died on 10th January, 1876, and secondly to Florence Mary, daughter of Henry Quinan, who died on 14th October, 1894.

Jones's oil portraits are numerous, nearly every one of note for many years sat to him; but his art was commonplace, and though his pictures satisfied his sitters as faithful likenesses they are poorly painted, mechanical in execution, and without any artistic merit. His portrait by himself is in the Council Room of the Royal Hibernian Academy.

James, 1st Duke of Abercorn. Painted for the Grand Jury of the county of Donegal. R.H.A., 1877.

James, 1st Duke of Abercorn, as Charles I. Painted for, and presented to, the Duke by a number of those who were present at the Grand Fancy Ball given in Dublin Castle in February, 1876. The page represented in the picture is P. Burke, son of Sir Bernard Burke. R.H.A., 1878.

Priscilla, Countess Annesley. [J. H. Moore-Garrett, Corrie Wood, Castlewellan.]

James Andrews, Belfast. R.H.A., 1875.

James Apjohn, M.D. R.H.A., 1876.

Charles Ball. R.H.A., 1856.

John Banks, M.D. R.H.A., 1880.

Miss Banks. R.H.A., 1870.

William, 3rd Earl of Bantry. R.H.A., 1875.

Jane, Countess of Bantry. R.H.A., 1875.

Miss Alma Barton, in fancy costume. R.H.A., 1875.

Thomas E. Beatty, M.D. R.H.A., 1870. Painted for the Medico-Philosophical Society, to whom it was presented by Mrs. Beatty. [Royal College of Physicians, Dublin.]

Richard Montesquieu Bellew. [Lord Bellew, Barmeath.]. R.H.A., 1882.

Countess of Belmore. R.H.A., 1879.

Rt. Hon. F. Blackburne, Lord Chancellor. A copy of the picture by Catterson Smith, with Chancellor's robes substituted for those of Chief Justice. [King's Inns.]

Sir Maziere Brady, Lord Chancellor. Posthumous portrait. [King's Inns.]

Sir Maziere Brady. Posthumous portrait. [National Gallery of Ireland.] R.H.A., 1874. Painted for the Gallery and presented to it by Lady Brady.

Sir Maziere Brady. [Late Sir Francis Brady, Bart.]

Mrs. Brady. [Mrs. Jervis White.]

Colonel Maziere Kyle Brady, R.E. [Late Sir Francis Brady, Bart.] R.H.A., 1886.

Lt.-General Andrew Browne, C.B. R.H.A., 1886.

Samuel Butcher, Bishop of Meath. R.H.A., 1878.

Duke of Cambridge. [United Service Club, Dublin.] R.H.A., 1886.

Professor (now Sir) Charles A. Cameron. R.H.A., 1878.

Mrs. Cameron. R.H.A., 1878.

James M., 3rd Earl of Charlemont, K.P. R.H.A., 1885.

Elizabeth J., Countess of Charlemont. R.H.A., 1885.

H. E. Chatterton, Q.C. R.H.A., 1864.

H. E. Chatterton, when Vice-Chancellor. R.H.A., 1869.

Fleetwood Churchill, M.D. [Royal College of Physicians.] R.H.A., 1876.

Lady Randolph Churchill. R.H.A., 1878 and 1879.

Lieutenant Neville Coghill, who died defending the colours of his regiment at Isandula. R.H.A., 1880.

Charles Copland. [Royal Bank, Foster Place.] R.H.A., 1878. Painted for the Directors of the Bank.

Charles, Marquess Cornwallis, Lord Lieutenant. [Dublin Castle.] A copy.

Robert G. Cosby, of Stradbally. Presented to him by members of the Queen's County Hunt. R.H.A., 1877.

Martin Cregan, P.R.H.A. [Royal Hibernian Academy.] Posthumous portrait, painted in 1889 and presented by the artist in 1891.

Sir Ralph Cusack. Painted in 1890 for the Directors of the Midland Great Western Railway.

Hon. Frederick and Lady Fanny De Moleyns. R.H.A., 1872.

Mrs. Eccles. R.H.A., 1856.

Lt.-Colonel F. Ellis. [Friendly Brothers' Club.] R.H.A., 1853.

Rev. Thomas Ellis. [Friendly Brothers' Club.] R.H.A., 1889.

Mrs. W. Exham and children. R.H.A., 1861.

Gerald Fitzgibbon, Master in Chancery. R.H.A., 1879.

Lt.-Colonel Ffolliott. R.H.A., 1876.

Hugh, 1st Earl Fortescue, Lord Lieutenant. A copy.

William Stowell Garnett. R.H.A., 1876.

George A. H., 7th Earl of Granard, K.P. R.H.A., 1879.

Frances, Countess of Granard. R.H.A., 1877.

Edmund Dwyer Gray, painted in 1881. R.H.A., 1882; destroyed in the fire in the City Hall, 11th November, 1908.

Children of William Gregory. Drawing. R.H.A., 1849.

Sir Arthur E. Guinness (now Lord Ardilaun). R.H.A., 1880.

Lady Olive Guinness (now Lady Ardilaun). R.H.A., 1875.

Mrs. Henry Hamilton. Water-colour. [Rev. R. Scriven, Balbriggan.]

John Hamilton, M.D. R.H.A., 1876.

Hon. George Handcock. [Friendly Brothers' Club.] R.H.A., 1868.

William Hargrave, surgeon. [Royal College of Surgeons, Dublin.]

Sir Edward Harland. [Belfast Public Library.]

J. A. Henderson, Mayor of Belfast. A presentation to him from the inhabitants of Belfast. R.H.A., 1876.

Jonathan Henn, Q.C. Painted for Robert A. Holmes. R.H.A., 1874.

Jonathan Henn, Q.C. [King's Inns.] Presented to the Benchers by E. F. Mayne.

Mrs. Henn and children. R.H.A., 1858.

Hugh Holmes, Q.C. R.H.A., 1884.

Mrs. Holmes. R.H.A., 1884.

Dr. Alfred Hudson. [Royal College of Physicians, Dublin.] Presented by Dr. James Little. R.H.A., 1883.

Robert Hunter. R.H.A., 1885. Painted for the Turf Club. A folio etching from the picture was published by Cranfield.

Lady Jones. R.H.A., 1887.

Colonel King-Harman. [United Service Club, Dublin.] R.H.A., 1889.

Augusta, Countess of Kingston. R.H.A., 1873.

Philip Lawless. [Stephen's Green Club.] R.H.A., 1873.

James Anthony Lawson, Justice of the Queen's Bench. R.H.A., 1885.

Daniel Litton. R.H.A., 1875.

Edward Litton, Master in Chancery. [Friendly Brothers' Club.] R.H.A., 1872.

E. Falconer Litton. R.H.A., 1877.

Charles, 6th Marquess of Londonderry, K.G. [Dublin Castle.]

James Vokes Mackey. R.H.A., 1880.

Mrs. J. Vokes Mackey. R.H.A., 1880.

Lady McNaughton. R.H.A., 1877.

Mrs. Dodgson Madden. Water-colour. [Rev. R. Scriven, Balbriggan.]

John W., 7th Duke of Marlborough, K.G. [Dublin Castle.]

Mrs. Molony, of Kiltanon. R.H.A., 1868.

Daniel O'Connell. Posthumous portrait. Painted for the Royal Irish Yacht Club. R.H.A., 1873.

Henry Ormsby, Judge of the Landed Estates Court. R.H.A., 1883.

Rev. Canon O'Rourke. R.H.A., 1883.

Richard Pennefather, Baron of the Exchequer. R.H.A., 1860.

Lt.-General Sir Arthur Phayre. [East India United Service-Club.] R.H.A., 1887.

George Pim, of Brennanstown. Painted for the Board of Irish Lights. R.H.A., 1885.

William C., 4th Lord Plunket, Bishop of Meath, afterwards Archbp. of Dublin. R.H.A., 1875.

Anne, Lady Plunket. R.H.A., 1875.

Mrs. Purefoy. R.H.A., 1885.

R. W. Quinn. [Masonic Hall, Molesworth Street.]

Patrick Reid. R.H.A., 1887.

Joseph Robinson. R.H.A., 1856.

Mrs. Goderich Shedden. R.H.A., 1861.

R. W. Shekleton, Q.C. [Masonic Hall, Molesworth Street.]

Philip Crampton Smyly, M.D. R.H.A., 1876.

John, Earl Spencer, Lord Lieutenant. [Dublin Castle.]

Charlotte, Countess Spencer.

Master Stanford. R.H.A., 1858.

George Johnston Stoney. [Royal Dublin Society.] R.H.A., 1883.

Sir Robert P. Stewart. [Royal Irish Academy of Music] R.H.A., 1889.

Walter Sweetman. [Stephen's Green Club.] R.H.A., 1878.

Godwin Swift. R.H.A., 1856.

Hugh Tarpey, High Sheriff and Ex-Lord Mayor of Dublin. R.H.A,, 1879. Presented to the Corporation of Dublin by Mrs. Tarpey in 1898. Destroyed in the fire in the City Hall, 11th Nov., 1908.

Mrs. Tarpey. R.H.A., 1879.

Lady Louisa Tenison. R.H.A., 1876.

Mrs. S. F. Townshend. R.A., 1872.

Richard Chenevix Trench, Archbp. of Dublin. [The Palace, Stephen's Green.] A Presentation Portrait. R.H.A., 1884.

Joliffe Tuffnell, President R.C.S.I. [Royal College of Surgeons.] R.H.A., 1875.

Mrs. Tuffnell and child. R.H.A., 1861.

Mrs. Tuffnell and her daughters. R.H.A., 1866.

Theresa, younger daughter of Joliffe Tuffnell, as "Water-Lilies." R.H.A., 1869.

Hon. Mrs. Smyth-Vereker. R.H.A., 1863.

Albert Edward, Prince of Wales. [Masonic Hall, Molesworth Street.] R.H.A., 1882.

John Francis Waller, LL.D. R.H.A., 1873.

John Winder. Painted for the Armagh Club. R.H.A., 1884.

Lady Wolseley, of Mount Wolseley. R.H.A., 1879.

Vision of the Kings, from "Macbeth." R.H.A., 1841.

A Daughter of Erin. Engraved by F. Holl, 1856.

The Emigrant's Prayer. R.A., 1872.

Limerick Lasses. R.A., 1875.

Connemara Girls. R.H.A., 1880.

Sabrina. R.H.A., 1883.

Masonic Jewels. [Masonic School, Ballsbridge.]

The Emigrant's Departure. Marchioness Conyngham's collection, Christie's, 8th May, 1908.

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