John Syme

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John Syme (1795–1861) was a Scottish portrait-painter.


A nephew of Patrick Syme, he was born in Edinburgh and studied in the Trustees' Academy. He became a pupil and assistant of Sir Henry Raeburn, whose unfinished works he completed, and subsequently practised with success as a portrait-painter in Edinburgh.

Syme was an original member of the Royal Scottish Academy, founded in 1826, and took an active part in its management. He died in Edinburgh on 3 August 1861.


John James Audubon, 1826 portrait by John Syme, commissioned by William Home Lizars.

He painted many portraits. That of John Barclay M.D. was exhibited at the London Royal Academy in 1819, and went to the Scottish National Gallery; it was engraved in mezzotint by Thomas Hodgetts, as were also those of John Broster and Andrew McKean. Syme's self-portrait went to the Royal Scottish Academy.



 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain"Syme, John (1795-1861)". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900.