a portrait-painter in London, and for a time practised portraiture, first in London and then for eight or nine years at Gloucester. On his return to the metropolis he painted fruit and flowers with success until his health gave way, when he retired to Shopwyke, near Chichester. There he died on 4 Oct. 1764.
The three brothers all lie in the churchyard of St. Pancras, Chichester. A portrait group of them, painted by William Pethier, was engraved in mezzotint by him in 1765.
[G. Smith's Pastorals, 2nd ed. 1811; Dally's Chichester Guide, 1831, p. 96; Redgrave's Dict. of Artists; Graves's Dict. of Artists, 1760–1893; Seguier's Dict. of Painters; Nagler's Künstler-Lexikon.]
SMITH, GEORGE (1797?–1850), captain in the navy, born about 1797, entered the navy in September 1808 on board the Princess Caroline of 74 guns, and, remaining in her for upwards of four years, served in the North Sea, Baltic, and Channel. In February 1813 he was moved into the Undaunted with Captain Thomas Ussher [q. v.], whom he accompanied to the Duncan of 74 guns in August 1814. On 20 Sept. 1815 he was promoted to be lieutenant. He afterwards served in the Mediterranean and on the coast of South America till his promotion, on 8 Sept. 1829, to the rank of commander. In 1830 he was appointed to superintend the instruction of officers and seamen in gunnery on board the Excellent at Portsmouth, and was advanced to post rank on 13 April 1832. His connection with the gunnery school at Portsmouth led him to invent a new method of sighting ships' guns, a lever target, and the paddle-box lifeboats, which were widely adopted upon paddle-wheel steamers. In June 1849 he was appointed superintendent of packets at Southampton, where he died, unmarried, on 6 April 1850. He was the author of ‘An Account of the Siege of Antwerp’ (1833) and some minor pamphlets on professional subjects.
[O'Byrne's Nav. Biogr. Dict.; Gent. Mag. 1850, i. 664.]
SMITH, GEORGE (1800–1868), historian and theologian, born at Condurrow, near Camborne, Cornwall, on 31 Aug. 1800, was the son of William Smith, a carpenter and small farmer at Condurrow (d. 1852), by his wife, Philippa Moneypenny (d. 1834). He was educated at the British and Foreign schools at Falmouth and Plymouth, to which town his father retired in 1808, when the lease of his small farm expired. In 1812 he returned with his parents to Cornwall, and was employed for several years in farm work and carpentering. Having accumulated a small sum of money, he became a builder in 1824, and still further increased his resources. He married at Camborne church, on 31 Oct. 1826, Elizabeth Burrall, youngest daughter of William Bickford and Susan Burrall. Bickford was a manufacturer, who afterwards invented ‘the miners' safety fuse,’ and Smith became a partner in his enterprises, taking out separately or in conjunction with his fellow-adventurers several patents for improvements in that article. Through his business he amassed a considerable fortune.
Smith's energy largely contributed to the completion of the Cornwall railway, which ran from Plymouth to Truro and Falmouth, and he was the chairman of the company to January 1864. All his life he was a diligent student, and he was famed throughout Cornwall for his powers in speaking and lecturing. In 1823 he became a local preacher among the Wesleyan methodists, and for many years before his death was one of the leading laymen in that society. He was a member of the Royal Asiatic Society, of the Society of Antiquaries (23 Dec. 1841), of the Royal Society of Literature, and of the Irish Archæological Society. In 1859 he was created LL.D. of New York.
Smith died at his house, Trevu, Camborne, on 30 Aug. 1868, and was buried in the Wesleyan Centenary Chapel cemetery on 4 Sept. His widow died at Trevu on 4 March 1886, aged 81, and was buried in the same cemetery on 9 March. They had four children, the eldest of whom, William Bickford-Smith, represented in parliament the Truro division of Cornwall from 1885 to 1892.
The writings of Smith included:
- ‘An Attempt to ascertain the True Chronology of the Book of Genesis,’ 1842.
- ‘A Dissertation on the very Early Origin of Alphabetical Characters,’ 1842.
- ‘Religion of Ancient Britain to the Norman Conquest,’ 1844; 2nd edit. 1846; 3rd edit. revised and edited by his eldest son, 1865.
- ‘Perilous Times, or the Aggressions of Antichristian Error,’ 1845, an attack on tractarianism.
- ‘The Cornish Banner: a Religious, Literary, and Historical Register,’ 1846–7; published in monthly numbers, July 1846 to October 1847, both inclusive, at the cost of Smith.
- ‘Sacred Annals:’ vol. i. ‘The Patriarchal Age,’ 1847 (2nd edit. revised, 1859); vol. ii. ‘The Hebrew People,’ 1850; vol. iii. ‘The Gentile Nations,’ 1853. The three volumes were reissued at New York in 1850–4.
- ‘Wesleyan Ministers and their Slanderers,’ 1849; 2nd edit. 1849, referring to the charges of the