attributed to him by Pope is supported by Hearne (Diary, April 1733), who says that ‘when any litigious suits fell out’ Kyrle ‘would always stop them and prevent people going to law.’ That, however, he did not succeed in exterminating the local attorneys is proved by the fact that towards the close of his life he was himself involved in litigation. Pope does not confirm the tradition that Kyrle used to release poor debtors from prison and re-establish them in life. He took a lively interest in a dame's school in the town, paying it a visit of inspection every week, and making minute inquiries into the behaviour of the children, and reproving delinquents with ‘Od's bud, Od's bud, but I will mend you.’ Though his rank in the county was but that of a squire who worked like a yeoman on his land, and lived on intimate terms with his labourers, he was chosen sheriff in 1683. He had little literary culture. Strictly temperate, he was fond of entertaining his friends with solid joints, washed down with cider, perry, or ale. The fragments of the repast were always given to the poor. He usually smoked two pipes of tobacco a day. He remained a bachelor all his life, his house being kept by one of his female relations, Miss Judith Bubb, and he died of old age on 7 Nov. 1724. The body, after lying in state for nine days, was buried in the chancel of Ross Church, without any monument or inscription. A blue slate stone, with the inscription, ‘John Kyrle, Esq., 7 Nov. 1724, æt. 88,’ was placed to mark the spot in 1749. The existing monument was erected in 1776 by Colonel James Money, executor of Kyrle's cousin Constantia, Lady Dupplin, pursuant to a direction in her will. It is a pyramidal marble tablet on the north wall of the chancel, with a bust of Kyrle in relief, and three allegorical figures, with coat of arms and motto. It is inscribed as ‘In memory of Mr. John Kyrle, commonly called the Man of Ross.’ A more recent monument is the Kyrle Society, started by the efforts of Misses Miranda and Octavia Hill, and inaugurated by Prince Leopold in 1877. The society endeavours, by giving popular concerts, promoting the conversion of waste plots of ground into gardens, and encouraging the growth of flowers and decoration of cottages, to brighten the lives of the working classes in the large towns (see Good Words, xxii. 609). Kyrle left the estates to his kinsman, Vandervort Kyrle, for life, with remainder to his sons in tail male.
Kyrle's house continued for some years to be occupied by the family, but was afterwards converted into the King's Arms Inn, and finally into shops. It faced the south-east corner of the market, on which Kyrle had inscribed a monogram intended to signify ‘Love King Charles from the heart.’ Kyrle refused to sit for his portrait; but it was painted from a sketch taken without his knowledge in church. This, or a copy, long hung in the King's Arms, whence it was removed in 1795 to the Swan Inn, Tewkesbury, and thence to the Talbot Inn, Shrewsbury, and was ultimately purchased by Sir Mark Sykes of Strettington Hall, near Malton, Yorkshire. A print of it is in the ‘European Magazine’ for 1786, ii. 161. There was also a copy in the King's Head Inn at Ross. Heath (Excursion down the Wye, 1826) states that Lord Muncaster was supposed to be in possession of the original. In person Kyrle was tall, broad-shouldered, and well built, red-faced and hearty, with a large nose and a loud voice. He wore a short bushy wig and brown suit.
[Robinson's Mansions and Manors of Herefordshire, p. 280; Reg. Matric. Oxford; Foster's Alumni Oxon. 1500–1714; Pope's Works, ed. Elwin and Courthope, iii. 150, 529; Heath's Excursion down the Wye, 8th edit., 1826; Cooke's Collections … of the County of Hereford, pp. 108 et seq.; Strong's Ross and Archenfield, p. 12; Gent. Mag. 1786, pt. ii. p. 1026; Notes and Queries, 1st ser. vi. 542, 2nd ser. xi. 466, xii. 72, 4th ser. vi. 154; Burke's Landed Gentry, ‘Money Kyrle.’]
KYRTON, EDMUND (d. 1468), abbot of Westminster. [See Kirton.]
KYTE, FRANCIS (fl. 1710–1745), mezzotint-engraver and portrait-painter, was author of a few fair mezzotint-engravings, mostly published by Edward Cooper, for whom he probably worked. They include two portraits of Thomas Parker, earl of Macclesfield, after Kneller (one dated 1714), Henrietta, countess of Godolphin, after Kneller, Harriet, duchess of Newcastle, after Kneller, two of John Gay after W. Aikman, Archbishop Sharpe, and a set, engraved with John Faber, junior, of ‘The Worthies of Great Britain.’ In 1725 Kyte was convicted of forging a bank-note, and sentenced to the pillory. Later in life he seems to have devoted himself to portrait-painting. Among his sitters were Edward Cave, printer (1740), engraved by T. Worlidge; William Caslon, type-founder (1740), engraved by J. Faber, jun.; the Rev. George Whitefield, whole length (1743), engraved by J. Faber, jun.; and George Francis Handel (1742), engraved by Lewis (now in the possession of Mr. W. H. Cummings) (see Keith Milnes, Memoir relating to a Portrait of Handel, 1829).
[Chaloner Smith's British Mezzotinto Portraits; Dodd's manuscript Hist. of English Engravers (Brit. Mus. Add. MS. 33402).]