Mr. Lucy was born in the parish of Norton Canon, in the county of Hereford. In the month of July 1813, being the eldest son of Mr. Charles Lucy, descended from a branch of the family of Lucy, of Charlecote, in the county of Warwick - who afterwards settled in Worcestershire. The father of this eminent artist, Mr. Charles Lucy, died two years since at Hereford, at the age of 91.
Mr. Lucy, the subject of this notice, was at about the age 15 apprenticed to his maternal uncle Mr. Price Griffiths, of Hereford, chemist; and whilst so engaged, and self-taught, commenced his career as a painter of portraits - that of his father being one of the earliest of his productions.
He soon left his uncle's establishment, and became an earnest in the art in which he so ably succeeded; and for several years travelled in Belgium, France, and the Netherlands, and returned to England about the year 1836. He then competed with Mr. Frost (who was also self-taught) for the gold medal of the Royal Academy, with his picture "Prometheus Chained," which is now in the possession of the Philosophical Society at Hereford. Mr. frost obtained the prize, his picture being the more finished than that of Mr. Lucy, but the latter was generally looked upon as the bolder and more artistic work About two years later, when the late Sir Robert Peel took great notice of him, Mr. Lucy obtained the Two Hundred Guineas Prize at the Exhibition of Cartoons in Westminster Hall, for his picture "The Pilgrim Fathers Embarking for America," Mr. Lucy then obtained considerable distinction and much practice as a rising artist.
Subjoined is a list of his principal pictures, nearly the whole of which have been exhibited at the Royal Academy in London:-
The last finished work of Mr. Lucy was the portrait of Mr. John Bosley, already mentioned: and he had within the last month received a commission for a portrait of Mr.James Rankin, of Bryngwyn, High Sheriff of the county of Hereford, the magnificent founder of the Hereford Free Library and Museum
The picture "The Man Of Ross" became the property of the late Dr. Bleeck-Lye, of Hereford, but it is now the property of Mr. Cam, of Hereford; that of "Lord Nelson" is at Lloyd's-room, Royal Exchange; and that of the First Lord Seye and Sele is at Broughton Castle, Oxon, the seat of the present Lord Seye and Sele, Archdeacon and Canon of Hereford Cathedral.
In regard to portraits executed by Mr. C. Lucy we must not omit those of Mrs. Griffiths; his grandmother, a venerable and excellent lady; of Dr. Bleeck-Lye, now in the possession of Mr.Lingon; of the late Mr. Philip James, an old and intimate friend of Mr. Lucy; of Mr. Anthony, another very old friend, and the late Mrs. Anthony; and of Mr. John Bright, M.P.
Although most professedly a landscape painter, yet when he adopted that
branch of art his productions were very beautiful, such as in the "Children
in the Wood" and "Children Sleeping at Midday in Summer." It may
also be remarked in the more severe studies of historical subjects, his
conception, his grouping, and details were not to be surpassed. Nor was there
any exaggeration in delineating the incidents and personifications in his
pictures. We may justly inquire, whilst all his principal paintings were
exhibited at the Royal Academy why his name was not enrolled in the list of
members of that institution, where many, his inferiors, can now be seen
with"R.A." attached to their patronymic?
Middle Temple, May 26, 1872.