"A portrait is a picture in which there is just a tiny little something not quite right about the mouth." -- John Singer Sargent

Sunday, August 21, 2016

John Summerfield

This c. 1821-25 painting of John Summerfield (1798-1825) by William Jewett hangs in the Natioal Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC.
"In 1821, John Summerfield, a young Methodist evangelist, arrived in New York from England to preach a gospel of salvation. A religious revival was stirring in the United States, and Summerfield found a receptive audience. In Washington the crowds that came to hear him were so great that he was forced to move outside and preach on the steps of the Capitol. 'When he becomes animated,' a news­ paper account reported, 'he appears as if the very breathings of the Spirit were on him and his countenance is lighted with a fire bright and holy.'

Summerfield was painted by his fellow Methodist William Jewett before 'disease marred his youthful beauty.' He died of tuberculosis at the age of twenty-seven, a month after he helped found the American Tract Society, established to carry the gospel across the expanding country." -- National Portrait Gallery
This engraving of Summerfield by A.F. Dulaney apparently after Jewett's painting is the frontis piece of John Holland's 1845 Memoirs of the life and ministry of the Rev. John Summerfield.

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