Cross, Thomas (DNB00)

CROSS, THOMAS (fl. 1632–1682), engraver, was employed in engraving numerous portraits of authors and other celebrities as frontispieces to books published in the middle of the seventeenth century. His style shows no attempt at artistic refinement, but merely an endeavour to render faithfully the lineaments of the persons or objects portrayed; this he executed in a dry and stiff manner. His portraits are, however, a valuable contribution to the history of the period, and some of them are the only likenesses we possess—e.g. that of Philip Massinger, prefixed to an edition of his plays in 1655. Among the persons of note whose portraits were engraved by him were Thomas Bastwick, Richard Brownlowe, Jeremiah Burroughes, Samuel Clarke, John Cleveland, Nicholas Culpepper, Robert Dingley, John Gadbury, Battista Guarini, Richard Kilburne, William Lilly, Christopher Love, Thomas Manley, Sir Jonas Moore, David Papillon, Francis Quarles, Jeremiah Rich, Francis Roberts, Joseph Symonds, Thomas Taylor, Sir George Wharton, Leonard Willan, Vincent Wing, and many others, including a portrait of Richard III in Sir G. Buck's ‘Life and Reign’ of that monarch (1646). Cross was also one of the principal engravers of music of the time, and a long series of single sheets of music engraved on copper-plates bear his name and address. He had a son also of the same name, Thomas Cross, who shared his father's profession, and his work can with difficulty be distinguished. A frontispiece to William Evats's translation of ‘The Rights of War and Peace’ by Hugo Grotius (with portraits) is signed Thomas Cross, senior (1682), and an edition of Purcell's ‘Sonatas in four Parts for the Harpsichord’ was engraved by Thomas Cross, junior, 1683. To Dr. Blow's ‘Amphion Anglicus’ (1700) there are prefixed some verses by Henry Hall, organist of Hereford Cathedral, in which occur the lines—

While at the shops we daily dangling view
False concord by Tom Cross engraven true;

and again in some verses prefixed to Purcell's ‘Orpheus Britannicus’ (1701)—

Then honest Cross might copper cut in vain.

These verses, no doubt, refer to the younger Cross, who devoted himself principally to engraving music.

[Redgrave's Dict. of English Artists; Huber and Roost's Manuel des Curieux et des Amateurs de l'Art; Bromley's Catalogue of Engraved English Portraits; Grove's Dict. of Music and Musicians; Lowndes's Bibl. Man.]

L. C.