Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Slaughter, Stephen

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SLAUGHTER, STEPHEN (d. 1765), portrait-painter, was a native of Ireland, and worked there for a time, subsequently coming to London, where he took a good position in the profession. He succeeded the younger Walton as keeper and surveyor of the king's pictures, and held that post until his death, which took place at Kensington on 15 May 1765. Slaughter's works are fairly well painted, with a good deal of colour in the faces and heavy shadows. His portrait of Sir Hans Sloane (1736), formerly in the British Museum, is now in the National Portrait Gallery; those of the Hon. John and Lady Georgiana Spencer (1737) are at Blenheim; and that of John Hoadly, archbishop of Armagh (1744), is in the National Gallery of Ireland, which also possesses his group of five members of the Hell-Fire Club. Of Slaughter's portraits of Nathaniel Kane, lord mayor of Dublin in 1734, and General Richard St. George, mezzotints by J. Brooks and M. Ford were published in Dublin. Slaughter executed in chiaroscuro in 1733 an imitation of a pen drawing by Parmigiano, then in the possession of Dr. Hickman.

[Walpole's Anecdotes of Painting (Dallaway and Wornum); Redgrave's Dict. of Artists; Cat. of National Gallery of Ireland.]

F. M. O'D.