John Hall ( 1739 – 1797)
John Hall was a British engraver and painter. Hall was born in Wivenhoe, near Colchester, on December 21, 1739. He studied under the French immigrant engraver Simon Francois Ravenet. A fellow student was William Wynne Ryland, later executed for forgery. In 1756 and 1761, he won prized from the Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufacturers and Commerce.
Hall was appointed a fellow of the Society of Artists in 1765, later serving as its elected director in 1768, 1769, and 1771. In 1785, he was appointed historical engraver to George III, following the death of William Woollett.
He engraved a number or portraits including one of Richard Brinsley Sheridan. He also engraved the plates for Bell’s British Theatre which illustrated scenes created by Hall himself, and portraits of actors performing well-known roles. Hall was also a painter, though he was typically a copyist, working in a stiff old-fashioned style.