Peterborough cathedral from the West front
Thomas Girtin (1775 – 1802)
This drawing is one of six variations on the subject. Its studied precision reveals Girtin’s early training as a topographical watercolourist with Edward Dayes. The strong vertical accent, sound sense of perspective, and intricate decorative detail reflect Girtin’s experience as a draughtsman of architectural subjects. His use of the close, off-centre viewpoint and the way he fills the sheet with the whole edifice were influenced by the work of the well-known topographer Thomas Malton the younger (1748-1804).