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Thomas Patch

ca. 1720 Devonshire – 1782 Florence

The English painter and engraver Thomas Patch was a friend of Joshua Reynolds, whom he accompanied to Italy in 1747. Patch settled first in Rome, where his landscape capriccios were especially popular with British travellers doing the Grand Tour. In 1755 he moved to Florence, where he continued to reside until his death, earning his living by painting vedute and genre pieces. He also showed a considerable interest in the history of art, as is illustrated by his engraved reproductions of the works of the main Florentine masters of the 14th and 15th centuries, such as Giotto, Ghiberti, Masaccio and Fra Bartolomeo. In so doing, Patch was one of the first to draw attention to the work of these artists at a remarkably early stage.