Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 22.djvu/413

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Grant
Grant
407

as treasurer of the society in 1798. In 1802 he was chosen major-commandant of the Lincoln's Inn corps, in 1809 was elected lord rector of the university of Aberdeen, and on 14 June 1820 was created a D.C.L. by the university of Oxford. He was unmarried. His portrait, painted by Sir Thomas Lawrence 'for the gentlemen of the chancery bar,' which formerly hung in the Rolls Court, was presented in 1883 to the National Portrait Gallery (No. 671), and has been engraved by Richard Golding. An engraving by W. H. Mote of the portrait of Grant by Harlow, which used to hang in the six clerks' office, will be found in Brougham's 'Statesmen of the Time of George III' (1st ser. p. 135).

[Townsend's Lives of Twelve Eminent Judges, 1846, ii. 191-233; Foss's Judges of England, 1864, viii. 295-300; Brougham's Statesmen of the Time of George III, 1839, 1st ser. pp. 135-141; Anderson's Scottish Nation, 1863, ii. 368-9; Chalmers's Biog. Dict. of Eminent Scotsmen, (1869), ii. 173-4; The Georgian Era, 1833, ii. 328; Morgan's Celebrated Canadians, 1862, pp. 86-8; Legal Observer, iv. 81-4; Gent. Mag. vol. lxiii. pt. i. p. 382, pt. ii. p. 966, vol. cii. pt. i. pp. 561-2; Haydn's Book of Dignities, 1851; Notes and Queries, 7th ser. v. 28, 135, 193, 273; Official Return of Lists of Members of Parliament. ii. 187, 190, 211, 225, 238, 253; Lincoln's Inn Registers.]

G. F. R. B.

GRANT, WILLIAM JAMES (1829–1866), painter, born at Hackney in 1829, showed an early talent for drawing, and at the age of ten was much impressed by the Elgin marbles. He studied drawing regularly, attended Haydon's lectures, and obtained two prizes from the Society of Arts. In 1844 he became a student of the Royal Academy, and in 1847, while still a student, exhibited his first picture, ‘Boys with Rabbits.’ In the following year he aimed higher, with ‘Edward the Black Prince entertaining the French King after the Battle of Poitiers.’ During the next few years he painted chiefly sacred subjects, such as ‘Christ casting out the Devils at Gadara’ (1850), ‘Samson and Delilah’ (1852). In 1853 he reverted to historical subjects, and among his later pictures may be noticed ‘Mozart's Requiem’ (1854), ‘Scene from the Early Life of Queen Elizabeth’ (1857), ‘Eugene Beauharnais refusing to give up the Sword of his Father’ (1858), ‘The Morning of the Duel’ (1860), ‘The Last Relics of Lady Jane Grey’ (1861). In 1866 he exhibited ‘The Lady and the Wasp’ and ‘Reconciliation,’ but died on 2 June in that year, at the early age of thirty-seven. All his works showed great promise. A picture of ‘The Widow's Cruse of Oil,’ painted for a private commission, was exhibited only at Liverpool. Grant also executed numerous drawings in red and black chalk, chiefly illustrations to poetry.

[Art Journal, 1864, p. 233; Redgrave's Dict. of Artists; Graves's Dict. of Artists, 1760-1880 ; Royal Academy Catalogues.]

L. C.

GRANT, Sir WILLIAM KEIR (1772–1852), previously Grant-Keir and Keir, general, son of Archibald Keir, H.E.I.C.S., was born in 1772, and on 30 May 1792 was gazetted to a cornetcy in the 15th king's light dragoons (now 15th hussars), in the name of William Keir. He became lieutenant in 1793, and accompanied part of his regiment to Flanders, where he fought at Famars, Valenciennes, and elsewhere in the campaigns of 1793–4. He distinguished himself personally on 17 April 1794, when a squadron of his regiment saved the Prince of Schwartzenberg from the enemy's hussars during a reconnaissance, and was present at Villiers-en-Couche, 24 April 1794, where two squadrons of the 15th and two of the Austrian Leopold hussars, although they found themselves unexpectedly without supports, overthrew a much superior force of French cavalry, pursued them through the French infantry, and captured three guns, an action which saved the emperor of Germany, who was on his way to Coblentz, from being taken by the French (see Cannon, Hist. Rec. 15th Hussars; also Randolph, Life of Sir Robert Wilson, pp. 60–102). Keir was promoted to a troop in the 6th dragoon guards (carabineers), with which he served in Germany in 1795 and Ireland in 1798. In the latter year Keir received permission from George III to wear the large gold medal given by Francis II in commemoration of the action at Villiers-en-Couche. Only nine of these medals were struck, one being given to each of the eight British officers present, and the ninth placed in the Imperial Museum, Vienna. These officers were also made knights of the military order of Maria Theresa, which, as in the case of other foreign orders of chivalry previous to 1814, carried the rank of a knight-bachelor in England and other countries. It also gave the wearer the rank of baron in Austria. Keir ‘joined the Russian and Austrian armies in Italy early in 1799, and served the campaigns of 1799–1800–1. He was present at the battles of Novi, Rivoli, Mondovi, and Sanliano; he served in the gunboats at the siege of Genoa, in which he was frequently engaged, and in several actions in the mountains of Genoa, when the Austrians and Russians lost nearly thirty-three thousand men; also at the battle of Marengo and the sieges of Alessandria,