Bowyer, Robert (DNB00)

BOWYER, ROBERT (1758–1834), miniature painter, seems to have been at an early date known to Smart, the miniature painter, and is supposed by Redgrave to have been Smart's pupil. He exhibited miniatures and paintings at the Royal Academy occasionally between 1783 and 1828; was appointed painter in water-colours to the king, and miniature painter to the queen; and received much fashionable patronage. In 1792 he issued a prospectus giving details of a plan for an edition of Hume's 'History of England,' with continuation to date, to be 'superbly embellished.' West, Smirke, Loutherbourg, and other leading artists of the day furnished historical pictures specially to be engraved for this work, which contains besides a number of engravings of portraits, medals, and antiquities. It was issued in parts, and by 1806 five unwieldy folios were published, reaching to the year 1688; the continuation was never issued, as a loss of 30,000l. is asserted to have been already incurred. Bowyer also published 'An Impartial Narrative of Events from 1816 to 1823,' London, 1823. He died at his house at Byfleet, Surrey, 4 June 1834.

[Cat. Brit. Mus. Lib.; Cat. R. A.; Gent. Mag. August 1834, p. 221; Redgrave's Dict. of Artists (1878).]

W. H-h.