JOhn Kay 1. .

John Kay 1



The miniature-painter and caricaturist John Kay was born near Dalkeith, Midlothian, in April 1742. The son of a mason, he was apprenticed at the age of thirteen to George Heriot, a barber in Dalkeith. Six years later, he moved to Edinburgh where he continued to work as a journeyman barber. In 1771 he was enrolled a member of the Society of Surgeon-Barbers and set up in business on his own account. In his spare time, however, he began to produce highly original portrait sketches and caricatures of Edinburgh characters, despite having received no formal training in drawing. He attracted the patronage of William Nisbet of Dirleton, who settled an annuity upon him, and in 1785 was finally able to give up his trade for art. Kay opened a shop in Parliament Close where he sold his etchings. From 1784 to 1822 he is calculated to have etched nearly nine hundred plates portraying many of the most notable Scotsmen of the day  Many of Kay's more satirical prints were bought by his subjects themselves with the express purpose of destroying them. On at least one occasion, he was 'cudgelled' and, on another, unsuccessfully prosecuted. In 1792 he decided to publish some of his work in book form and prepared a brief biographical sketch which supplies most of the few details that are known of his life. The project, however, remained unrealized, and it was not until after his death that a collection of 340 of his etchings was published in 1837-38. Kay contributed portraits to the annual exhibitions of the Edinburgh Associated Artists from 1811 to 1816, and to the 1822 exhibition of the Institution for the Encouragement of the Fine Arts in Scotland. He died in Edinburgh on 21 February 1826.
Editions :- Kay  was aided, it is said, by James Thomson Callender, who compiled some descriptive letterpress, including a slight autobiographical sketch, but the work was unfinished at the time of Kay's death. In 1837-8 a quarto edition of his plates, under the title 'A series of original portraits and caricature etchings by the late John Kay, miniature painter, Edinburgh,' was published in monthly numbers by Hugh Paton of Edinburgh. A second edition, in four volumes, was issued in 1842 by the same publishers. The plates then passed into the hands of A. and C. Black of Edinburgh, who had them retouched, and in 1877 published a third edition in two volumes, after which the plates  were destroyed. A 'popular letterpress edition', in two volumes, which very inadequately reproduced the more interesting plates, and reprinted only a portion of the letterpress, was published in London and Glasgow in 1855 but is easily identified as the paper is much cheaper not rag paper .This posthumous collection of Kay's caricatures was immensely popular and led to a second, four-volume, edition being printed in 1842 ( same thing split into four parts to look larger !) . Kay's portraits of Adam Smith are considered 'the only authentic likenesses that exist of the great economist' These etchings are priced from the 1838 booklet but may be earlier I have a few which seem to be proof to India paper of the 1838 as similar to the Neale of that time but a proof edition is not mentioned  **The size for the image ranges from A4 down to small miniatures. .. all are shown at the same image size so if exact sizing is needed please ask as listing each individually will take forever** Due to them being a pain to identify as he did not number all the site will now have them all with pics and for sale buttons where available page 1 1-.60



John Kay (1742-1826), Miniature painter and caricaturist. plus grumpy cat I. Mr. John Kay


II. A Triumvirate. The Daft Highland Laird, John Dhu, or Dow, alias Macdonald, and Jamie Duff, an idiot..
A Triumvirate. The Daft Highland Laird. John Dhu or Dow, alias MacDonald and Jamie Duff, an Idiot pl 2 This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size . £18r



Francis McNab of McNab pl 3

III. Francis McNab, Esq. of McNab This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size . £14 b + 1r





Three Giants, With a Group of spectators /IV.
  This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size . £18 r



V. Lord Kames. Hugo Arnot, Esq. of Balcormo, Advocate. Lord Monboddo.
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size  £14r



VI. Contemplation
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size
sold


VII. Lord Gardenstone/
LORD GARDENSTONE Francis Garden; Eccentric Advocate This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size . £15 b +1 r



VIII. Hugo Arnot, Esq., Advocate, and Gingerbread Jock
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size . £18 b +1r




  IX. Dr. Glen and the Daft Highland Laird
JAMES ROBERTSON of Kincraigie; Daft Highland Laird This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size  1r



X. A Sleepy Congregation
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size .



XI. Dr. James Graham going along the North Bridge in a High Wind
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £12b



XII. Dr. James Graham lecturing in Edinburgh
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size



SIR DAVID RAE of Eskgrove; Scottish Judge  XIII. James Macrae, Esq.
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size  £12r


 

XIV. Captain Page and Captain Vicars
CAPTAIN PAGE and CAPTAIN VICARS 7th Reg of Foot  14 This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £12 b  + 1r




XV. The Three Captains of the City Guard. George Pitcairn, George Robertson, Robert Pillans.
  the Three Captains of Pilate's Guard  (George Pitcairn; George Robertson; Robert Pillans) This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £15 r x 2



XVI. Provost David Steuart and Bailie John Lothian
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £12b



XVII. Alexander Hunter, Esq. of Polmood, and Roger Hog, Esq. of Newliston
ALEXANDER HUNTER Polmood & ROGER HOG Newliston  This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £18 b 




XVIII. Francis Grose, Esq., F.A.S. of London and Perth/
Francis Grose, Esq., F.A.S. of London and Perth This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £15b




XIX. Captain Mingay, with a porter carrying George Cranstoun in his creel
/CAPTAIN MINGAY & Porter Carrying Dwarf George Cranstoun This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size   £12 b     +1r



XX. Samuel McDonald and George Cranstoun
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size  £18r



XXI. Major Fisher



XXII. Dr. Joseph Black


  XXIII. Dr. Joseph Black, Lecturing
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £14r



XXIV. Dr. James Hutton

This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size  £10 b  + 1r



XXV. Philosophers (James Hutton; Joseph Black)

This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size  £14 b



XXVI. Dr. John Brown

This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size 



XXVII. Dr. Brown in his study



  XXVIII. Sir James Hunter Blair, Bart., Late Lord Provost of Edinburgh
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £12r



XXIX. Alexander Carlyle, D.D., Inveresk ALEXANDER CARLYLE of Inveresk; Church of Scotland

ALEXANDER CARLYLE of Inveresk; Church of Scotland This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size . £12  x 2r











***

XXX. The Modern Hercules/
“The Modern Hercules Destroying the Hydra of Fanaticism,” This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size . £15 b +1r



XXXI. Adam Ritchie/
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size . £18 b =!r




XXXII. Angelo Tremamondo, Esq., Riding Master
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size  close trimmed £18r



  XXXIII. Lord Rockville Dr. Adam Smith, and Commissioner Brown
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size  £12r



XXXIV. Adam Smith, LL.D. And F.R.S. of London and Edinburgh
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size  £18b



XXXV. The Sapient Septemviri. King's College, Aberdeen.
The Sapient Septemviri -The seven professors of King’s College, Aberdeen, caricatured in this Print were all hostile to a scheme of the day for the union of King’s and Marischal Colleges. 35 This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size  . £18



XXXVI. Vincent Lunardi, in his basket, ready to ascend.



XXXVII. Marriage
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size   12r



XXXVIII. A group of Aeronauts.



XXXIX. The Right Honourable Colonel Lennox.
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £18 r


XL. Colonel Hunter. Colonel R Hunter

This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size a £10 b  + 1r



XLI. The Rev. William Robertson, D.D., author of the History of Scotland and Charles V
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £10b



XLII. Dr. William Robertson, D.D., in his full clerical dress  .
 Majestys Historiographe This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size   £15 r


XLIII. Quartermaster Taylor


XLIV. Cock-fighting Match between the counties of Lanark and Haddington



XLV. James Donaldson
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size  £10 b x 2 + 2r





/XLVI. Mr. Alexander Thomson and Miss Crawford
Alexander Thompson/ Long Arms  / Miss Crawford This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size   £15 b x + 2r avail one first edition but poorly printed




XLVII. Retaliation; or the Cudgeller caught
 RETALIATION Capt Crawford Cudgeller Caught  This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size   £15 b +1 R


XLVIII. Henry Viscount Melville and The Hob. Robert Dundas of Arniston
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £18b


 

XLIX. Bailie James Dickson and Bailie James Torry BAILLIE James Dickson and Baillie James Torry
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £10r



L. William Doyle, Samuel Sone, and William Foster

William Doyle, Samuel Sone Little Doctor, Wm Foster This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size . £15 1 r



LI. Sir Ralph Abercromby, K.B., giving the word of command



LII. General Sir Ralph Abercromby, K.B., viewing the army, encamped on the plains of Egypt




LIII. Lauchlan McBain


LAUCHLAN McBAIN Vendor of Toasting Forks & fly-jacks This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size  £15r



LIV. Second print of Lauchlan McBain 
LAUCHLAN McBAIN Vendor of Toasting Forks & fly-jacks-  This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £12  1r





LV. Mrs. Siddons, Mr. Sutherland, Mrs. Woods, of the Theatre Royal, Edinburgh
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £18r



LVI. Captain George Gordon, Captain George Robertson, and John Grieve, Esq., Lord Provost of Edinburgh

Cpt Gordon, Cpt Robertson, John Grieve Provost This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size  £14r x 2



LVII. Rev. Hugh Blair, D.D. of the High Church, Edinburgh
THE author of the " Lectures on Rhetoric and Belles Lettres," and of five volumes of universally admired Sermons, whose life and writings have done so much credit to the Scottish pulpit, was born at Edinburgh in 1718. His father was a merchant, and grandson to Robert Blair, an eminent Presbyterian "' Scots Worthy" of the seventeenth century.*. This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size . £10  +2 r  


LVIII. The Honourable Henry Erskine, Dean of the faculty of Advocates
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £15r



LIX. James Bruce, Esq. of Kinnaird, and Peter Williamson



LX. Courtship
This is an antique bookplate either   from A Series of Original Portraits and Caricature Etchings by the late John Kay.  That was published  by Hugh Paton, Edinburgh 1838;  or one of the earlier editions  of loose plates on rag paper  size of page 275 ×211 mm with the engravings varying in size £15r





related links

John Kay of Edinburgh Page 1

John Kay of Edinburgh Page 2

John Kay of Edinburgh Page 3

John Kay of Edinburgh Page 4 

John Kay of Edinburgh Page 5

John Kay of Edinburgh Page 6

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