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Hargreaves, born in Liverpool, entered the Royal Academy Schools in London on 29 March 1790, possibly on the advice of Sir Thomas Lawrence, to whom he served an apprenticeship from 10 May 1793 until he returned to Liverpool because of ill health in August 1795. He went back to London in October 1797 and exhibited intermittently at the Royal Academy between 1798 and 1843 and at the Society of British Artists (of which he was a founder member) between 1824 and 1831. By 1803 he had established a practice in Liverpool where he also assisted his father in his drapery business until 1818. He built up a large clientele in Cheshire and Lancashire and in 1810 was elected a founder member of the Liverpool Academy, exhibiting there between 1810 and 1835.
With Sophia Shaw Hargreaves he had seven children. At least two of his sons, George Hargreaves (1797–1870) and Francis Hargreaves (1804–1877), became miniature painters and assisted in the family miniature-painting business,
|Height||4.00 inch||(10.16 cm)|