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Charles Shirreff

1749 - 1829

Artist. Born in South Leith, the son of a wealthy wine merchant, Shirreff was a deaf-mute who became the first pupil of Thomas Braidwood's pioneering Academy for the Deaf and Dumb in Edinburgh. He moved to London in 1768 and trained in art at the Royal Academy from 1769, where he went on to exhibit his work. He travelled to India with his father and sister in 1797, living in Madras and Calcutta before returning to Britain c.1808. Shirreff is particularly remembered for his miniature portraits of notables of the time including HRH the Prince of Wales in 1789.

A map drawn by Shirreff while at Braidwood's Academy is held by the Royal Scottish Geographical Society. He died in London and lies buried at St. Mary's Church on Paddington Green.

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