April 1, 1719. Sir Nicholas presented to King George I. two complete sets of the cartoons, and a set each to the prince and princess. The king gave him a purse of 100 guineas, and the prince a gold medal. The Duke of Devonshire, of whom he had borrowed 400l., remitted to him the interest of four years ; and in the following year procured him to be knighted by the king. He painted some portraits here, not with much success in likeness, and his eyes beginning to fail, he retired to France in 1724. His collection of drawings had been sold before, in 1723. Among them were some after Dominichino and Guercino, and one after Daniel de Volterra, 1 which Vertue preferred to all his works. There were an hundred and four heads, 2 hands, and feet, traced off from the cartoons. While he was making drawings of the cartoons, a person in London offered him 200l. for them, but he would not conclude any agreement till the plates were finished. They were sold at his auction for 52 guineas. The total amount of his drawings came to 320l. His whole number of plates, large and small, was 153.
besides part of the cartoons, engraved some plates of the story of Charles I.; but differing with Dorigny, and the climate not agreeing with him, he returned to Paris, where he died suddenly in 1743. A younger brother of his came over, and did some plates, but returned soon, finding greater encouragement at home.____________________
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Publication information: Book title: Anecdotes of Painting in England: With Some Account of the Principal Artists. Volume: 3. Contributors: Horace Walpole - Author. Publisher: Swan Sonnenschein. Place of publication: London. Publication year: 1888. Page number: 247.
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