Portrait by Sir Godfrey Keller, 1711; engraved: Barf Pinxf I Faber fecit 1733|
1672 - September 1, 1729
Sir Richard Steele, the Dublin born dramatist and politician, was knighted in 1717. He is best known for co-authoring the periodicals, The Tatler and The Spectator. The Tatlerpublished from Tuesday April 12, 1709 to Volume No. 271, Tuesday January 2, 1711is noteworthy to freemasons for its several references to Freemasonry.
His named portrait is centrally placed on the Engraved List of Lodges in the print entitled Les Free-Masons published in the 1735 edition of Bernard Picarts Cerérémonies et costumes religieuses de tous les peuple du monde. There is no viable explanation as to why Sir Richard Steele appears on the print, especially as there is no evidence of his ever having become a freemason.
Source: AQC 111 (1998) p. 23. Illustration from PICART, B. Cérémonies et coutumes religieuses de tous les peuples du monde ... Paris, 1736. V. IV. Engraving. After a drawing by Louise Fabrice Du Bourg.