Kensington and British Museums. In the following year he was raised to the full honours of the Academy, and received a premium from the British Institution of 200l. In 1819 he went to Rome by way of Geneva, Milan, Padua, Venice, Bologna, and Florence. Chantrey, who accompanied him, testifies to his merit as a companion, ‘easy and accommodating to a fault.’ At Rome he is said to have astonished the Italians by his portrait of Canova, one of his best works, which was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1820, and by the rapidity and skill with which he copied Titian's ‘Sacred and Profane Love’ (or a portion of it). He was elected a member of the Roman Academy of St. Luke, and in the British Museum are several sketches in Italy taken in the course of the tour. During the remainder of his life Jackson sent yearly to the Academy from five to eight portraits, though he does not appear to have become fashionable or to have charged more than fifty guineas for a portrait. The most he made in a single year was probably not more than 1,500l., a sum which Lawrence once received for one picture—that of Lady Gower and her child—but the list of Jackson's sitters from 1815 to 1830 contains many notable names, such as the Duke of York, the Dukes of Devonshire and Wellington, the Marquis of Chandos, Viscounts Normanby and Lascelles, Earls Grosvenor, Grey, Villiers, and Sheffield, Lords Grenville, Braybrooke, and Dundas, Lady Dover, Ladies Georgina Herbert, Caroline Macdonald, Mary Howard, and Anne Vernon, and the Hon. Mrs. Agar Ellis. He also painted some actors and actresses, Liston and Macready (as Macbeth), Miss Wilson, and Miss Stephens (Countess of Essex). At the Loan Collection of National Portraits at South Kensington in 1868 were (besides some already mentioned) portraits of James Heath, A.R.A., Dr. Wollaston, F.R.S., Dr. Latham, F.R.S., president of the Royal College of Physicians, James Montgomery the poet, the Rev. Adam Clarke, Wesleyan preacher, Sir John Franklin, the arctic explorer, and Sir John Barrow, F.R.S.
Jackson was a Wesleyan methodist, and executed the monthly portrait in the ‘Evangelist Magazine,’ the organ of his sect. His religious opinions were earnest but gloomy, and are said to have ruined his health and spirits in his last years, while the low state of his finances at his death is partly attributed to his extravagant generosity in support of Wesleyan institutions. That his religious opinions were not illiberal is nevertheless testified by his painting for the church of his birthplace (Lastingham) a copy of the Duke of Wellington's Correggio—‘Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane’—the figures increased to life size. He also gave 50l. in order to improve the light about the part of the building in which it was placed.
The death of Sir Thomas Lawrence on 7 Jan. 1830 might have been expected to give Jackson much professional advantage, but his health was then declining. On returning from Lastingham he caught a cold, which was aggravated by a chill caught in attending the funeral of his old patron the Earl of Mulgrave. He died at his house at St. John's Wood, 1 June 1831. His addresses, given in the Royal Academy Catalogues, are: 1804, Hackley Street; 1806, 32 Haymarket; 1809, 54 Great Marlborough Street; 1811, 7 Newman Street, where his painting-room was to the last. He married twice. His first wife, daughter of a jeweller named Fletcher, died in 1817; his second wife, daughter of James Ward, R.A., survived him with three children. They were left without any resources, and the Royal Academy granted a pension to the widow.
As a man Jackson was simple and sincere, silent in society, but companionable and even lively with one or two friends. As a portrait-painter he was wanting in vivacity and elevation, but very faithful and vigorous in character. Of his female portraits, that of Lady Dover is regarded as the finest; of his male, that of Flaxman. This portrait and that of Chantrey were commissions from Lord Dover, and were intended to form part of a series of portraits of famous English artists, which was never completed. Sir Thomas Lawrence characterised the Flaxman, at the Academy dinner of 1827, as ‘a grand achievement of the English School, and a picture of which Vandyck might have felt proud to own himself the author.’ In execution Jackson was rapid and masterly. Several stories are told by Cunningham and others of his ‘marvellous alacrity of hand’ in painting portraits and copying the works of others, and he excelled as a colourist. ‘For subdued richness of colour,’ says Leslie, ‘Lawrence never approached him.’
At the National Gallery is Jackson's portrait of the Rev. William Holwell Carr; and at the National Portrait Gallery, Catherine Stephens (Countess of Essex), Sir John Soane, his own portrait, and one of John Hunter (copied from Reynolds). At the South Kensington Museum is another one of Earl Grey, besides the six sketches made in Holland and Belgium. Among the numerous drawings by him at the British Museum are portraits of Sir David Wilkie, Joseph Nollekens, R.A., Alexander, emperor