Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Price, William (d.1722)

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1196992Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 46 — Price, William (d.1722)1896Lionel Henry Cust ‎

PRICE, WILLIAM, the elder (d. 1722), glass-painter, was a pupil of Henry Gyles [q. v.], glass-painter at York, and his immediate successor and most able scholar in the art. He first gained some fame by a window representing the ‘Nativity of Christ,’ painted in 1696 from the designs of Sir James Thornhill [q. v.] for Christ Church, Oxford. In 1700 he painted the great east window for the chapel of Merton College in the same university, and in 1702 ‘The Life of Christ,’ in six compartments, for the same chapel. Price's work, which was mainly in enamelled glass, had some merit, although it lacked strength and durability, and was marred by an excessive use of yellow glass. Price died in 1722.

Joshua Price (fl. 1715–1717), glass-painter, brother and fellow-pupil of the above, also worked at Oxford, where he repaired the windows in Queen's College Chapel originally painted in 1518, and mutilated by the puritans during the civil wars. In 1715 he painted ‘The Holy Family’ for the same chapel, and in 1717 repaired the windows by Van Linge there and at Christ Church. He also painted the chiaroscuro figures of prophets and apostles in the chapel of Magdalen College.

William Price, the younger (d. 1765), glass-painter, son of Joshua Price, also attained some celebrity as a glass-painter. At New College, Oxford, he filled the windows with several pieces of stained glass, painted by artists of the Rubens school in Flanders, and acquired by Price there. These he repaired and supplemented to a large extent with glass of his own painting. In 1722 and 1735 Price was employed to fill some of the windows of Westminster Abbey at the national expense. He painted ‘The Genealogy of Christ’ for the chapel at Winchester College, ‘The Herbert Family’ for a closet at Wilton House, ‘The Resurrection’ for the bishop's palace at Gloucester, and executed several works in mosaic for Horace Walpole at Strawberry Hill. Price died a bachelor, in Kirby Street, Hatton Garden, London, on 16 July 1765. The works of the Price family are of considerable interest with regard to the history of glass-painting in England.

[Winston's Memoirs of the Art of Glass-painting; Westlake's Hist. of Design in Painted Glass, vol. iv.; Dallaway's Hist. of the Arts in England; Walpole's Anecd. of Painting; Davies's Walks through the City of York.]

L. C.