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Works Thomas Girtin

A View near Lyme Regis

(?) 1797


Thomas Girtin (1775-1802)
  • A View near Lyme Regis
(?) 1797
Medium and Support
Graphite on paper
19.5 × 25.5 cm, 7 ⅝ × 10 in
Object Type
Outline Drawing
Subject Terms
Panoramic Format; The West Country: Devon and Dorset

A Panoramic View near Lyme Regis (TG1253)
Catalogue Number
Description Source(s)
Online Auction Catalogue


Lawrences, Crewkerne, 30 January 2003, lot 615 as 'Attributed to' Thomas Girtin

About this Work

This panoramic view of the high ground near Lyme Regis in Dorset appeared at a minor country sale as possibly by Girtin, but as far as I can tell from a poor-quality online image which is no longer available, it is by the artist and amounts to an important addition to the group of on-the-spot sketches that he made on his West Country tour in the autumn of 1797. Girtin is documented as having been in Exeter in early November, and it seems that his visit there, to sketch an interior view of the cathedral, was preceded by a journey through Dorset that took in Weymouth and Abbotsbury, as well as Lyme Regis, where he also produced a significant on-the-spot colour study looking down to the coastal town (TG1250) (Chancery, Income and Expenses, 1804).1 This drawing also formed the basis of a watercolour (TG1253), one of a pair of panoramic views taken from a few kilometres to the north east of Lyme (the other being TG1254), and this fact alone is enough to confirm the attribution of the sketch to Girtin. On the basis of research conducted on the watercolour, we are also now in a position to identify the view shown in the drawing with some precision. Thus, as Susan Morris has shown, the view looks south east from the Iron Age hill fort at Pilsdon Pen towards Portland, in the distance on the coast (Morris, 2016, p.14). The two finished watercolours effectively link together to form a larger panoramic image, meaning that Girtin must have produced a second pencil drawing covering the view to the west, and it is to be hoped that this too will reappear.

(?) 1797

The Coast of Dorset, with Lyme Regis Below


1797 - 1798

A Panoramic View near Lyme Regis


1797 - 1798

Above Lyme Regis, Looking across Marshwood Vale


by Greg Smith

Place depicted


  1. 1 The financial records of the artist's brother John Girtin (1773–1821) include two loans he made to Thomas Girtin during the trip. The records are transcribed in full in the Documents section of the Archive (1804 – Item 1).

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