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John Britton (1771-1857), Antiquary and topographer

Sitter in 3 portraits
Artist associated with 6 portraits
Moved to London at sixteen and was apprenticed to a wine merchant. He worked in a variety of jobs before being commissioned by a Salisbury publisher to compile an account of Wiltshire. The Beauties of Wiltshire (1801), was the first of a series of popular topographical books that became a new class of literary works. In 1805, Britton published the first of his nine-volume Architectural Antiquities of Great Britain (1805-14), and this was followed by fourteen volumes of Cathedral Antiquities of England (1814-35). Through his published work, Britton was one of the leading figures of the Neo-Gothic revival. He contributed regularly to the Gentleman's Magazine and other periodicals.

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John Britton

by William Brockedon
black and red chalk, 1831
NPG 2515(44)


John Britton

by John Wood
oil on canvas, 1845
On display in the Library at Bodelwyddan Castle
NPG 667


John Britton

by Charles Edward Wagstaff, after John Wood
mezzotint, 1845
NPG D20053