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RYALL, HENRY THOMAS (1811–1867), engraver, was born at Frome, Somerset, in August 1811. He was a pupil of Samuel William Reynolds [q. v.], the mezzotinto engraver, but the style in which he at first worked was that known as ‘chalk’ or ‘stipple.’ He began his career by engraving plates for the editions in folio and in octavo of Lodge's ‘Portraits of Illustrious Personages of Great Britain,’ and for the series of ‘Portraits of Eminent Conservatives and Statesmen,’ as well as for Heath's ‘Book of Beauty’ and other works. His larger and more important plates, however, are a combination of line and stipple, which he brought to a degree of perfection it had never reached before. Foremost among these are ‘The Coronation of Queen Victoria,’ after the picture by Sir George Hayter, and ‘The Christening of the Princess Royal,’ after Charles Robert Leslie, R.A., the engraving of which procured for him the honorary appointment of historical engraver to the queen. He likewise engraved ‘Christopher Columbus at the Convent of La Rabida,’ after Sir David Wilkie, R.A.; ‘The Blind Girl at the Holy Well,’ after Sir Frederick W. Burton, the first publication of the Royal Irish Art Union; ‘Landais Peasants going to Market’ and ‘Changing Pasture,’ after Rosa Bonheur; ‘The Death of a Stag,’ ‘The Combat,’ ‘The Fight for the Standard,’ ‘Just Caught,’ and ‘Dogs and their Game’ (a series of six plates), after Richard Ansdell, R.A.; ‘The Halt’ and ‘The Keeper's Daughter,’ after R. Ansdell, R.A., and W. P. Frith, R.A.; ‘The Pursuit of Pleasure’ and ‘Home! The Return from the Crimea,’ after Sir Joseph Noel Paton, R.S.A.; ‘Knox administering the first Protestant Sacrament in Scotland,’ after William Bonnar, R.S.A.; ‘Queen Victoria and the Prince of Wales,’ after Robert Thorburn, A.R.A.; ‘The Princess Helena and Prince Alfred,’ after F. Winterhalter; ‘Adam and Eve’ (‘The Temptation and the Fall’), after Claude Marie Dubufe; ‘Devotion,’ after Édouard Frère; ‘A Duel after a Bal Masqué,’ after Jean Léon Gérôme; ‘The Prayer,’ after Jean Baptiste Jules Trayer; and the following, among other plates, after Sir Edwin Landseer, R.A.: ‘There's Life in the Old Dog yet,’ ‘The Reaper,’ ‘The Dairy Maid,’ ‘The Deerstalker's Return,’ ‘A Highland Interior,’ ‘Waiting for the Deer to rise,’ ‘Coming Events,’ and ‘The Hawking Party,’ from Sir Walter Scott's novel ‘The Betrothed.’ He engraved also Sir William Charles Ross's miniatures of Queen Victoria and the prince consort, and several other portraits. He painted occasionally in oils, and exhibited in 1846 at the Society of British Artists ‘Waiting for an Answer,’ and at the Royal Academy ‘A Reverie’ in 1852, and ‘The Crochet Lesson’ in 1859.

Ryall died at his residence at Cookham, Berkshire, on 14 Sept. 1867.

[Gent. Mag. 1867, ii. 683; Athenæum, 1867, ii. 368; Art Journal, 1867, p. 249; Bryan's Dictionary of Painters and Engravers, ed. Graves and Armstrong, 1886–9, ii. 431; Redgrave's Dictionary of Artists of the English School, 1878.]

R. E. G.