that Pheidias would have said of Michael Angelo, ‘Here is a most clever and wonderful sculptor, but a barbarian.’ He refused to execute the statues of Huskisson and Sir Robert Peel (Westminster Abbey) unless he was allowed to drape them classically. He said: ‘The human figure concealed under a frock coat and trousers is not a fit subject for sculpture. I would rather avoid contemplating such objects.’ It was not to be expected that sculpture executed with strict regard for such strict principles should be ‘popular’ in England in Gibson's time, but there was little excuse for the abuse which the press poured on many of his finest works. They were always pure in sentiment, refined in form, and executed with perfect skill. His brother artists felt and recognised his merit, and he had always a cultivated circle of admirers who smoothed the way of life for him by affectionate companionship and plentiful employment. He died worth 32,000l., which (with the exception of a few small legacies) he left, with the contents of his studio, to the Royal Academy. There, in a room specially devoted to them, may be seen the original sketches and casts of all his principal works, besides a few works in marble. Not the least beautiful, and certainly, except the ‘Hunter,’ the most spirited of his works, are some of his bas-reliefs, as ‘The Hours leading the Horses of the Sun,’ and ‘Phaeton driving the Chariot of the Sun,’ executed for Lord Fitzwilliam.
[Life of John Gibson, R.A., containing his Autobiography, and edited by Lady Eastlake; Redgrave's Dict.]
GIBSON, KENNET (1730–1772), antiquary, born at Paston, Northamptonshire, in 1730, was the son of Thomas Gibson, M.A., rector of Paston. He was educated at Eton, and admitted a minor pensioner of Christ's College, Cambridge, 7 May 1748 (College Register). He graduated B.A. in 1752 as fourteenth junior optime, and was ordained. He was afterwards rector of Marholm, or Marham, Northamptonshire, and curate of Castor in the same county. On 3 July 1769 he issued proposals for printing by a guinea subscription a commentary upon part of the fifth journey of Antoninus through Britain, but his death in 1772 interrupted the design. In 1795 the manuscript was offered to John Nichols by the possessor, Daniel Bayley, fellow of St. John's College, Cambridge. Nichols published it with considerable additions in ‘Miscellaneous Antiquities in continuation of the Bibliotheca Topographica Britannica’ as ‘A Comment upon part of the Fifth Journey of Antoninus through Britain, in which the situation of Durocobrivæ [Durobrivæ?], the seventh station there mentioned, is discussed; and Castor in Northamptonshire is shown, from the various Remains of Roman Antiquity, to have an undoubted Claim to that Situation. To which is added a Dissertation on an Image of Jupiter found there. By the Rev. Kennet Gibson. … Printed from the original MS. and enlarged with the Parochial History of Castor … to the present time. To which is subjoined an Account of Marham,’ &c. (by Richard Gough), 4to, London, 1800; 2nd edition, enlarged, 4to, London, 1819.
[Nichols's Lit. Anecd. vi. 636, ix. 237.]
GIBSON, MATHEW (d. 1741?), antiquary, was educated at Queen's College, Oxford, where he graduated B.A. 9 Dec. 1700 and M.A. 26 June 1703. At an early date he made the acquaintance of Thomas Hearne, and corresponded with him. An entertaining letter from him to Hearne appears in ‘Letters from the Bodleian Library,’ 1813, i. 197. It is dated from ‘Lord Scudamore's, near Hereford,’ 19 Nov. 1709. Hearne wrote in his diary in April 1734: ‘Mr. Mathew Gibson, rector of Abbey Dore, called on me. He said that he knew Mr. Kyrle (the “Man of Ross”) well, and that he was his wife's near relation—I think her uncle. He said that Kyrle did a great deal of good, but 'twas all out of vanity and ostentation. I know not what credit to give to Mr. Gibson on this account, especially since he hath more than once spoken against that good worthy man, Dr. Ottley, late bishop of St. David's. Besides, this Gibson is a crazed man, and withal stingy, though he is rich, and hath no child by his wife’ (Reliq. Hearnianæ, iii. 132). He was instituted to the living of Abbey Dore 27 Nov. 1722. His successor, the Rev. Digby Coates, was instituted 21 July, 1741, ‘on vacancy caused by death of the last incumbent’ (Diocesan Register). He wrote ‘A View of the Ancient and Present State of the Churches of Door, Home-Lacy, and Hempsted, endowed by John, lord viscount Scudamore, with some memoirs of that Ancient Family, and an appendix of records and letters,’ London, 1727, a handsome quarto, of which there are two copies in the British Museum Library.
[Oxford Graduates; Nichols's Lit. Anecd. viii; Reliquiæ Hearnianæ, ed. Bliss, 1869, iii. 131–2; Hearne's Collections (Oxford Hist. Soc.), i. 279, ii. 171, 311; Cooke's Continuation of Duncumb's Hereford, iii. 112; information from the Diocesan Registry, Hereford.]
GIBSON, MATTHEW, D.D. (1734–1790), catholic prelate, fourth son of Jasper Gibson of Stonecrofts, near Hexham, Northumber-