Chauveau, Francis

, a painter, engraver, and designer of great talents and industry, was born at Paris in 1613) and died there in 1676. His first performances were some engravings from the pictures of Laurence de la Hire, who was his master; but the liveliness of his imagination not comporting with the tardiness of the graving tool, he began to delineate his own thoughts in aquafortis. If his works have not the delicacy and mellowness that distinguish the engravings of some other artists, yet he threw into them all the fire, all the force and sentiment of which his art is susceptible. He worked with surprising facility. His children used to read to him after supper the passages of history he intended to draw. He instantly seized the most striking part of the subject, traced the design of it on the plate of copper with the point of his graver; and, before he went to bed, fitted it for being corroded by the aquafortis the next day, while he employed himself in engraving or drawing something else. He supplied not only painters and sculptors with designs, but also carvers and goldsmiths, jewellers and embroiderers, and even joiners and smiths. Besides 4000 pieces engraved by his hand, and 1400 executed from his designs, he painted several small pictures, which were much admired, and many of them were purchased by Le Brun. The multitude of works on which he was employed brought their authors to his house, and their frequent meetings and conversations there terminated in the establishment of the French academy. He was admitted into the royal academy of painting and sculpture in 1663, and obtained a pension | farengraving the plates of the Carousal. His small plates, Mr. Strutt says, are executed in a style much resembling that of Le Clerc, founded upon that of Callot. In his large prints he approaches near to that coarse, dark style, which was adopted by his tutor, La Hire. Among the sets of prints executed from his own compositions, are those for the “Bible History” the “History of Greece” the “Metamorphosis of Benserade” the “Jerusalem of Tasso” the “Fables of La Fontaine” “Alaric,” or “Rome conquered” and several romances. Among the prints engraved from other masters are, “Christ with the Disciples at Emmaus,” from Titian a “Concert,” from Dominichino; the “Life of St. Bruno,” from Le Sueur; “Apollo and Daphne,” from N. Poussin; “A Virgin and Child, with St. John and little Angels,” finely etched, and finished with much taste; and “Meleager presenting the Head of the Boar to Atalanta.” With all his talents and fame, Perrault assures us that he was a man of great modesty. 1


Moreri.—Dict. Hist.—Perrault les Hommes lllustres.