Charles Jervas was an Irish portrait painter and translator. By the mid-1690s he was in London, where he stayed and trained with Sir Godfrey Kneller. Between 1698 and 1708 Jervas studied in Paris and Rome, and acted as an agent for British art collectors. On his return to London he set up a successful portrait studio. With the help of his patron, Prime Minister Robert Walpole, Jervas secured the post of king’s painter. In this capacity he painted King George II, Queen Caroline and Prince William, Duke of Cumberland. While his reputation as a painter declined during the 1730s, Jervas’s literary ambitions resulted in a number of translations of French, Italian and Spanish literature. His most famous translation, of Cervante’s ‘Don Quichote’, was published posthumously in 1742.