Cole, Humfray (DNB00)

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COLE, HUMFRAY (fl. 1570–1580), engraver, was, according to his own description, a native of the north of England, and the specimens we have of his work show him to have been a careful and ingenious workman. He was employed in engraving mathematical and similar instruments in brass, of which there are some specimens in the British Museum. One of these is an astrolabe, most ingeniously constructed and beautifully engraved, at one time in the possession of Henry, prince of Wales. For the second edition of Archbishop Parker's, or the 'Bishops' Bible,' published in 1572, he engraved a map of the Holy Land, on which he describes himself as 'Humfray Cole, goldsmith, a Englishman born in ye north and pertayning to ye Mint in the Tower, 1572.'

On the strength of his having engraved this map he has been credited with the portraits of Queen Elizabeth, Leicester, and Burghley, which appear in the same book; but the execution of these does not resemble his work, and they occur in the first edition of the bible published in 1568, from which Cole's map is absent. From his employment at the mint and the general character of his work he appears to have been only a mechanician and not an artist.

[Redgrave's Dict. of English Artists; Walpole's Anecdotes of Painting, ed. Dallaway and Wornum; Chatto and Jackson's Hist. of Wood Engraving.]

L. C.