Documents, Dated Watercolours and Early Accounts of the Artist
Abraham Rees, The Cyclopaedia; or, Universal Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, and Literature, vol.17, London, 1819 (Rees, 1819, no page number)
GIRTIN, THOMAS, in Biography, a draftsman of uncommon capacity, who lately adorned our days and if he had not been cut off by an early death, would probably have exhibited unrivalled talents in the peculiar branch of the art he adopted. He was born in 1775, and was one of those who have contributed to raise almost a new species of art by the use of water-colours in landscape painting. He drew with a ready hand, in a style entirely his own, and with great taste and effect; though not always with a strict adherence to truth. He died of consumption, brought on by irregularity, at the early age of 27.
22 May 1819
The Literary Gazette, and Journal of Belles Lettres, Arts, Sciences, &c., no.122 (22 May 1819), p.331
Noting the lack of works by Girtin, Michael Rooker (1746–1801) and Paul Sandby (c.1730–1809) in the collection of Walter Fawkes (1769–1825) and his exhibition at Grosvenor Square, the anonymous writer says that Girtin’s watercolours have ‘all the variety which marks the present, with much of the correctness which pertained to the former era’.