Portrait of patriot sure to stir up interest

Miniature of United Irishmen member, who was hung, drawn and quartered, is up for auction, writes Des O’Sullivan.

Portrait of patriot sure to stir up interest

This portrait miniature of John Sheares by John Comerford (1773-1832) is at the James Adam Sunday Interiors’ auction in Dublin tomorrow (may 11). It is estimated at €250-€350.

The inscription on the back of the miniature reads: “John Sheares. Executed for the cause of his country in 1798. Painted by John Comerford, Dublin.”

The 8.5cm high miniature on ivory is attributed to the Kilkenny-born, Dublin-based artist, John Comerford

A portrait miniature of Cork patriot, John Sheares (1756-1798), comes up at Adam’s Sunday Interiors sale in Dublin tomorrow.

He and his brother Henry (1753-1798) — lawyers and members of the United Irishmen — were hung, drawn and quartered at the height of the 1798 Rebellion. They had become politicised by the French Revolution.

The 8.5cm high miniature on ivory is attributed to the Kilkenny-born, Dublin-based artist, John Comerford (1773-1832).

An inscription on the back reads: “John Sheares, executed for the cause of his country in 1798”.

Estimated at €250-€350 it is from a Dublin collection associated with antique-dealer, Henry Naylor, considered the most important Irish dealer of the first half of the 20th century.

After Naylor’s death there was a five-day auction by Murphy, Buckley and Keogh to dispose of his stock in 1959. His nephew, the late Ronnie MacDonald, in turn became Dublin’s most famous antiques’ dealer.

The 530-sale features collectibles from Naylor’s own collection and from the Deepwell collection of the late Dublin businessman John Reihill.

On offer is around 160 lots of silver as well as porcelain, furniture; art; Irish glass and collectible items.

The sale is on view today from 11am to 5pm and the auction is at 11.30am tomorrow.

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