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Works Thomas Girtin after James Moore

Ewell Church, with a Funeral Procession Approaching

(?) 1793

Primary Image: TG0169: Thomas Girtin (1775–1802), after James Moore (1762–99), Ewell Church, with a Funeral Procession Approaching, (?) 1793, graphite and watercolour on wove paper, 20.5 × 23.8 cm, 8 ⅛ × 9 ⅜ in. Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane (1:1972).

Photo courtesy of Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art, Photograph: QAGOMA (All Rights Reserved)

Thomas Girtin (1775-1802) after James Moore (1762-1799)
  • Ewell Church, with a Funeral Procession Approaching
(?) 1793
Medium and Support
Graphite and watercolour on wove paper
20.5 × 23.8 cm, 8 ⅛ × 9 ⅜ in
Object Type
Studio Watercolour; Work after an Amateur Artist
Subject Terms
Gothic Architecture: Parish Church; Surrey View

Catalogue Number
Description Source(s)
Sale Catalogue; Gallery Website


James Moore (1762–99); his widow, Mary Moore (née Howett) (d.1835); bequeathed to Anne Miller (1802–90); bequeathed to Edward Mansel Miller (1829–1912); bequeathed to Helen Louisa Miller (1842–1915); ... Anthony Reed Gallery, 1979; bought by the Gallery, 1980

Exhibition History

Anthony Reed and Andrew Wyld, London, 1979, no.18 as ’A Funeral Procession Approaching a Country Church’; Andrew Wyld, 1983, no.18; bought by the Gallery, 1983


QAGOMA Collection Online as  'Church at Newark ... attrib. to Thomas Girtin' (accessed 05/09/2022)

About this Work

The subject of this watercolour was not identified when it appeared on the art market in 1979. However, it is clearly based on a pencil drawing by Girtin’s first significant patron, the antiquarian and amateur artist James Moore (1762–99) (TG0169a), which is inscribed ‘Ewell Church’. His sketch of the old church of St Mary at Ewell in Surrey, which is dated ‘July 8th 93’, was made on the second of three tours Moore undertook to the southern counties. It appears to have been worked over and considerably enhanced by Girtin, but this was done back in London and the artist did not visit the site himself. Even though there is no specific evidence that the work was ever in Moore’s collection in the form of the various inventories that were made of his drawings by Girtin, it is likely that he commissioned the watercolour as well. Girtin clearly had access to the original pencil drawing and the subject itself seems to have had a personal association for his patron. The prominent funeral procession seen entering the church constitutes the most significant figure group in any of Girtin’s commissions for Moore of a comparable size, and one can easily imagine that the widow who goes ahead of the coffin was suggested by a recent event. Moore carefully inscribed two of the tombstones depicted in his original drawing with the names ‘Yorks’ and ‘Wills’, and this might help us to identify the subject depicted by Girtin. The extensive records of the inscriptions on the monuments in the churchyard do include a ‘Wells’ and a ‘Willis’, but so far this has not helped with the identification (Exwood, 1998, pp.70–71).

Only the fifteenth-century flint west tower of St Mary’s still remains, the rest having been demolished when the new church at Ewell was built in the middle of the nineteenth century. Moore’s drawing and Girtin’s watercolour have, as a result, become important records of the building’s appearance.


Ewell Church


by Greg Smith

Place depicted

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