Greenhill, John

, a very ingenious English painter, was descended from a good family in Salisbury, where he was born. He was the most successful of all the disciples of sir Peter Lely, who is said to have considered him so much as a rival, that he never suffered him to see him paint. Greenhill, however, prevailed with sir Peter to draw his wife’s picture, and took the opportunity of observing how he managed his pencil; which was the great point aimed at. He is said to have been equally qualified by nature for the sister-arts of painting and poetry; but | his loose and unguarded manner of living was probably the occasion of his early death; and only suffered him just to leave enough of his hand, to make us wish he had been more careful of a life so likely to do honour to his country. Mrs. Behn, with whom he was a great favourite, endeavoured to perpetuate his memory by an elegy, to be found among her works. He painted a portrait of bishop Ward, which is now in the town-hall of Salisbury. He died May 19, 1676. 1


Walpole’s Anecdotes. Pilkington.