Raeburn, Sir Henry

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Raeburn, Sir Henry (1756–1823). Raeburn was born and worked all his life in Edinburgh. He was the leading Scottish portrait painter of his day, recording many of the personalities of the city and a number of Highland chieftains before the time of depopulation and emigration. Largely self-taught, he visited London in 1784 on his way to study in Italy and met Reynolds, whose style influenced him in a way that his Italian experience did not. Having married a wealthy widow in 1780, he added to their fortune by buying land on the outskirts of Edinburgh which he developed speculatively. In 1812 he was elected ARA and a full RA three years later. In 1822, when George IV visited Edinburgh, he knighted Raeburn, creating him king's limner and painter for Scotland the following year. Raeburn's portraits of Mrs Scott-Moncrieff and of the Revd Robert Walker skating on Duddingston Loch are among many of his works in the National Gallery of Scotland.

June Cochrane

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Sir Henry Raeburn

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