Byrne, William (DNB00)

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BYRNE, WILLIAM (1743–1805), landscape engraver, was born in London in 1743. He studied for some time under his uncle, a Birmingham engraver of arms, and at the age of twenty-two gained the Society of Arts medal for a plate of the ‘Villa Madama,’ after Richard Wilson. He then went to Paris and became a pupil of Aliamet and afterwards of J. G. Wille. He was a member of the Incorporated Society, and exhibited in Suffolk Street between 1760 and 1780. He died in Titchfield Street, London, on 24 Sept. 1805, and was buried at Old St. Pancras Church. His works, which are numerous, display much skill in aerial perspective and beauty in the finish of the skies. Among them are ‘The Antiquities of Britain,’ after Hearne; ‘The View of the Lakes of Cumberland and Westmoreland,’ after Joseph Farington; ‘Apollo watching the Flocks of King Admetus,’ after Lauri; ‘The Flight into Egypt,’ after Domenichino; ‘The Death of Captain Cook;’ ‘The Waterfall of Niagara,’ after Wilson, &c. Byrne had a son and three daughters, who all became artists; two daughters, Anne Frances and Letitia, are noticed above. His second daughter, Mary, married James Green (1771–1834) [q. v.]

[Redgrave's Dictionary of Artists of the English School, 1878, 8vo; MS. notes in British Museum.]

L. F.