Sir Francis Grant PRA (18 January 1803 – 5 October 1878)
Grant was a Scottish portrait painter who painted Queen Victoria and many distinguished British aristocratic and political figures. He served as President of the Royal Academy.
Grant was the fourth son of Francis Grant, Laird of Kilgraston, near Bridge of Earn, Perthshire, and his wife Anne Oliphant of Rossie. Grant was educated at Harrow School and inherited a large sum of money on the death of his father in 1818 – a fortune which was apparently "soon spent". He had a passion for fox-hunting and other sports and initially intended to become a lawyer. However, he left his studies to take up painting, of which he was mainly self-taught – partly by copying the works of Velasquez and other masters – though he briefly spent time in the studio of Alexander Nasmyth.
He acquired a reputation as a fine painter of "sporting" subjects, and in 1834 exhibited at the Royal Academy
Grant was elected an associate of the Royal Academy, and in 1851 an academician. In 1866, on the death of Charles Eastlake, Edwin Landseer turned down the seat of Academy President, and Grant was elected instead. He was knighted soon afterwards.
Between 1834 and 1879 he contributed no fewer than 253 works, many of which were full-length portraits, to the exhibitions of the Royal Academy. Among these works were equestrian portraits of Queen Victoria and the prince consort, painted for Christ's Hospital.
Sir Francis Grant
Mezzotint etching by W. Humphrys after the original painting by Sir Francis Grant (1810-1878), titled The Meet at Melton. 20 x 28 inches Signed £450