RILEY or RYLEY, JOHN (1646–1691), portrait-painter, born in London in 1646, was one of the sons of William Riley or Ryley, Lancaster herald and keeper of the records in the Tower of London, who was created Norroy king-at-arms under the Commonwealth, but reverted to his herald's office at the Restoration. Another son, Thomas Riley, was an actor. Riley studied painting under Isaac Fuller [q.v.] and Gerard Soest [q.v.], and from the latter learnt a forcible, straightforward style of portraiture which rendered his portraits noteworthy. Riley did not attain much eminence until the death of Sir Peter Lely, when Thomas Chiffinch [q.v.] sat to him, and was so much pleased with his portrait that he showed it to the king. Charles II gave Riley some commissions, and eventually himself sat to him. During one sitting he is said to have remarked to Riley, 'Is this like me? Then oddsfish I'm an ugly fellow.' Riley also painted James II and his queen, and, on the accession of William and Mary, he was appointed court painter to their majesties. Riley was a quiet, modest man, very diffident of his own art, but his portraits are truthful and lifelike. With more self-confidence he might have attained to the position of Lely or Kneller. He was assisted in his draperies and accessories by John Closterman [q.v.], who finished several of Riley's pictures after his death. Riley, who suffered very much from gout, died in March 1691, and was buried in the church of St. Botolph, Bishopsgate. The registers of this church contain various entries relating to his family, including the burial, on 11 Jan. 1692–3, of his wife Jochebed. In the National Portrait Gallery there are portraits by Riley of James II, Edmund Waller the poet, Bishop Burnet, Lord Crewe, bishop of Durham, and William, lord Russell. Among his pupils was Jonathan Richardson (1665–1745) [q.v.], who married a niece of Riley, and, being himself the master of Hudson (who was in his turn the master of Sir Joshua Reynolds), transmitted a truly national strain in the art of portraiture. Portraits of Riley and his wife, drawn by Richardson, are in the print-room at the British Museum.
[Walpole's Anecdotes of Painting, ed. Wornum; De Piles's Lives of the Painters (Suppl.); Hallen's Registers of St. Botolph's, Bishopsgate.]
RIMBAULT, EDWARD FRANCIS (1816–1876), musical author and antiquary, born in Soho on 13 June 1816, was the son of Stephen Francis Rimbault, organist to St. Giles's-in-the-Fields, a descendant from a Huguenot refugee family. After learning the elements of music from his father he became pupil of Samuel Wesley, and at the age of sixteen he was appointed organist to the Swiss Church, Soho. In 1838 he lectured in London on the history of music, a rare subject then, and two years later he, with Edward Taylor, Gresham professor of music [q.v.], and William Chappell, helped to found the Musical Antiquarian Society, of which he became secretary, and for which he edited a number of works. At the same time he assisted in the foundation of the Percy Society, of which likewise he was secretary. In 1841 he became editor of the Motet Society's publications; a year later he was elected F.S.A. and a member of the Academy of Music, Stockholm; he was also made Ph.D. by Göttingen University, and was offered, but declined, the chair of music at Harvard University, U.S.A. In 1842 he edited for the Percy Society 'Five Poetical Tracts of the Sixteenth Century.' In 1844 he joined the committee of the Handel Society, for whom he edited the 'Messiah,' 'Saul,' and 'Samson.' In 1848 he was given a degree by Oxford University in recognition of his services in the arrangement of the music in the music school; and in the same year he lectured at the Royal Institution. Subsequently he occupied himself with his duties as organist of various churches, including St. Peter's, Vere Street, and St. John's Wood presbyterian church, and in editing musical journals and arranging music. He died at 29 St. Mark's Terrace, Regent's Park, on 26 Sept. 1876. He was buried at Highgate cemetery.
Fétis gives a list of no fewer than thirty-nine works, original and arranged or edited by Rimbault. This includes two editions of Marbeck's Book of Common Prayer, a new edition of Arnold's 'Cathedral Music,' North's 'Memoirs of Music' (1846, 4to), the 'Bibliotheca Madrigaliana’ (1847, 8vo); with Dr. E. J. Hopkins, ‘The Organ, its History and Construction’ (1855, 8vo); 'A History of the Pianoforte’ (1865, 4to), 'Early English Organ Builders’ (1865, 8vo), and the ‘Old Cheque Book of the Chapel Royal’ (1872, 4to) for the Camden Society. His chief literary performances outside musical topics were an edition of Sir Thomas Overbury's ‘Works’ (1856, 8vo), and 'Soho and its Associations,’ edited by George Clinch (London, 1895, 8vo). Rimbault possessed a wide rather than deep knowledge of the history of music in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. His musical compositions are few and unimportant. They include an operetta, 'The Fair Maid of Islington,' produced in 1838, and a musical drama, 'The