Waltham Abbey, Essex

Peter De Wint British

Not on view

De Wint’s masterful control of a watercolor here evokes trees, water and sky, as well as architecture. One of the oldest monasteries in England, Waltham Abbey is situated about sixteen miles north of London. Dissolved by Henry VIII, all that survives today of the once extensive complex is a twelfth-century church founded by Augustinian canons, its tower added 1556–58, and fragments of a fourteenth-century gatehouse. De Wint brought these elements closer together than they are in reality, and reduced the impact of secular encroachments by screening or omitting them. The entrance gate, at the left end of a bridge, is pierced by two gothic arches framed with moldings, with the sixteenth-century church tower standing against the sky beyond. Contemporary life is evoked by figures in the water and leaning over the bridge who wield long poles to clear weed or some other obstruction.

Waltham Abbey, Essex, Peter De Wint (British, Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent 1784–1849 London), Graphite and watercolor

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.