Jefferys, James (DNB00)
JEFFERYS, JAMES (1757–1784), painter, born in 1757 at Maidstone, Kent, was son of William Jefferys (d. 1805), painter, who found much employment at Maidstone, and exhibited some paintings of fruit at the Society of Arts in London. There is a drawing by William Jefferys at Maidstone of his fellow-townsman, William Woollett [q. v.], the celebrated engraver, with whom young Jefferys was placed as pupil. He made great progress in drawing, and became a student of the Royal Academy, where in 1773 he obtained the gold medal for an historical drawing of ‘Seleucus and Stratonice.’ In 1774 he obtained a gold palette from the Society of Arts for an historical painting, and in 1775 was selected to receive the allowance granted by the Dilettante Society to enable an Academy student to go to Rome. In 1773 and 1774 he exhibited some drawings and pictures at the Society of Artists. Jefferys remained four years in Rome, and on his return to London settled in Meard's Court, Soho. He painted a large picture of ‘The Scene before Gibraltar on the morning of 14 Sept. 1782,’ which he exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1783, and which was again exhibited at the European Museum in 1804. Woollett commenced an engraving of it, which he did not live to finish, but it was completed in 1789 by John Emes [q. v.] Another picture by Jefferys of ‘Orgar and Elfrida’ was engraved in stipple by R. S. Marcuard. Jefferys died of a decline 31 Jan. 1784, at the early age of twenty-seven.
[Edwards's Anecdotes of Painters; Redgrave's Dict. of Artists; Sandby's History of the Royal Academy.]