Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Thane, John

THANE, JOHN (1748–1818), printseller and engraver, born in 1748, carried on business for many years in Soho, London, and became famous for his expert knowledge of pictures, coins, and every species of vertu. He was a friend of the antiquary Joseph Strutt, who at one period resided in his family. He collected the works of Thomas Snelling [q. v.], the medallic antiquary, and published them with an excellent portrait drawn and engraved by himself. On Dr. John Fothergill's death in 1780 his fine collection of engraved portraits were sold to Thane, who cut up the volumes and disposed of the contents to the principal collectors of British portraits at that time. Thane was the projector and editor of ‘British Autography: a Collection of Facsimiles of the Handwriting of Royal and Illustrious Personages, with their Authentic Portraits,’ London (1793 &c.), 3 vols. 4to. A supplement to this work was published by Edward Daniell, London [1854], 4to, with a fine portrait of Thane prefixed, engraved by John Ogborne, from a portrait by William Redmore Bigg. Thane died in 1818. His portraits were sold in May 1819.

[Evans's Cat. of Engraved Portraits, No. 22033; Nichols's Illustr. of Lit. v. 436–7; Nichols's Lit. Anecd. ii. 160, iii. 620, 664, v. 668, ix. 740.]

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