Tuesday 24 July 2018

Hugh Boulter - Bust in Christ Church College Gallery, Oxford

Hugh Boulter (1672 - (1742).
Archbishop of Armagh.
Anonymous Marble Bust.

Christ Church College Gallery, Oxford.

Anonymous, competent but rather undistinguished bust 
the cutting of the hair is quite crude.

To me it feels that it was probably posthumous taken from an engraving.
Perhaps Henry Cheere or Scheemakers studio.

The remarkable Rococo Monument to Dr Hugh Boulter
Archbishop of Armagh
Formerly Bishop of Bristol
North Transept Westminster Abbey
Henry Cheere.
Erected in 1746.


Westminster Abbey have uprated their website - not before time - and although the images are not high resolution they are a vast improvement on the previous incarnation.

The inscription reads -

late Archbishop of ARMAGH and Primate of all IRELAND. 
A prelate so eminent 
for the accomplishments of his mind, 
the purity of his heart, 
and the excellency of his life, 
that it may be superfluous 
to specify his titles, 
recount his virtues, 
or even erect a monument to his fame: 
his titles he not only deserv'd but adorn'd, 
his virtues he manifest in his good works, 
which had never dazzled the public eye 
if they had not been too bright to be conceal'd; 
And, as to his fame, 
who so every has any sense of merit, 
any reverence for piety, 
any passion for his country, 
or any charity for mankind, 
will assist in preserving it fair and spotless; 
that when brass and marble shall mix with the dust they cover, 
every succeeding age 
may have the benefit of his illustrious example. 
He was born Jan. the 4th 1671, 
he was consecrated bishop of BRISTOL 1718, 
he was translated to the Archbishopric of ARMAGH 1723, 
and from thence to Heaven, Sept. the 27th 1742."

Is this bust by Cheere or was it sub contracted?


Hugh Boulter

Dr Hugh Boulter
The obvious soource of the mezzotints below
Oil on canvas
126.4 x 101.5 cms
bequeathed to the museumby William Jerdone Braikenridge, 1908

Bristol Museum and Art Gallery.

image from Art UK

Hugh Boulter (1672–1742), Archbishop of Armagh

Dr Hugh Boulter
A version of the portrait above
oil on canvas
124.5 x 99.1 cms
Christ Church College, Oxford.

Image courtesy Art UK


Hugh Boulter, after Francis Bindon, based on a work of circa 1742 - NPG 502 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Dr Hugh Boulter
After Francis Bindon
1242 x 1003 mm.

National Portrait Gallery

Crudely painted, NPG 502 is conceivably an early copy of Francis Bindon's portrait at Trinity College, Dublin, painted in 1742 as a 'memorial of the Archbishop's charitable efforts during the famine of 1740-41’. [1] Although the sitter is shown much younger in Thomas Beard's mezzotint, 1728, after Matthew Ashton, the design is similar to NPG 502 and the face mask close to Bindon's.

W. G. Strickland, A Descriptive Catalogue of the Pictures ... in Trinity College, Dublin, and in the Provost's House, Dublin, 1916, pp 10-11; Dictionary of National Biography, II, p 915.

Bought, 1878, from R. Gibbings of Trinity College, Dublin, by whom stated to have been in the Castle Caldwell collection, County Fermanagh; on loan to the National Gallery of Ireland, 1899-1969.

Hugh Boulter (1672–1742), Primate of Ireland (1724–1742)

Dr Hugh Boulter
Oil on Canvas 
123 x 98 cms

Another anonymous version of the portrait above
Public Record Office of Northern Ireland
Image courtesy Art UK


Portrait of Hugh Boulter, three-quarter length seated directed to left, looking towards the viewer, right hand holding a small volume in his lap, left hand resting on the arm of his chair, wearing clerical robes and bands, with brown curly hair to the shoulders; after Ashton; state after artists' names erased, plate reduced and publication line added.  Mezzotint

Dr Hugh Boulter.
by Thomas Beard after Matthew Ahton
350 x 246mm

British Museum.


Hugh Boulter, by Thomas Beard, after  Matthew Ashton, 1728 - NPG D32002 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Dr Hugh Boulter
Thomas Beard after Matthew Ashton
369 x 252 mm.
Published in Dublin

National Portrait Gallery


Portrait, three-quarter length seated directed to right, right elbow on the arm of his chair, left hand on the large volume propped on his knee, looking towards the viewer wearing clerical robes, bands, and chin-length wig; after Dahl; state after head and background reworked for new sitter, and address erased.  Mezzotint

Dr Hugh Boulter
360 x 356 mm
John Brookes after Michael Dahl
The print depicts Robert Howard in the first two states before being altered to Hugh Boulter
1740 - 56

British Museum


Portrait, whole-length standing directed to right, in clerical robes with billowing white sleeves and bands, right hand outstretched, holding a large volume under left arm, looking earnestly towards the viewer with shoulder-length brown hair, a woman and child, young boy and three others to right in the background, expressing thanks and a cherub holding back a curtain above to left; after Bindon; state after publication line added.   Mezzotint

Dr Hugh Boulter

Mezzotint after Francis Bindon
by John Brooks
508 x 374 mm.
1742 - 56?
British Museum