The only remaining source for this painter's early years is George Vertue, who in 1738 stated he was "about thirty-five or rather more", had been born in Florence and had come to England in about 1736 on the advice of British merchants belonging to the Levant Company, who had commissioned their portraits from him during his travels in the Middle East. From 1738 to 1744 he won much success in London's art market and among Italophile noblemen back from their Grand Tour, being preferred to both English portrait practice (fluctuating between Rococo and Kneller-like styles) and to other Italian portraitists in England at the time, such as the Cavaliere Rusca (worked in London 1738–39), and Andrea Casali (worked in London 1741–66). Beginning "above thirty portraits" from April to August 1738 alone (according to Vertue), Soldi's only serious rival was Jean-Baptiste van Loo (in London 1737–42). Particular patrons included the 2nd Duke of Manchester, 3rd Duke of Manchester, 3rd Duke of Beaufort and 4th Viscount Fauconberg. Soldi died in London.