View of Tintern abbey on the River Wye
Engraver: Jukes, Francis
Medium: Aquatint, coloured
Founded in AD1131 by Walter de Clare, Tintern was to become the wealthiest abbey in Wales, owning many estates. The monastic buildings were not finished until the 1340s. After the house was dissolved in the 16th century, the abbey fell into disrepair and gradually became the romantic ruin so admired by 18th-century travellers. William Coxe noted around 1801 that the abbey's situation near the River Wye gave it "a pleasing intermixture of wildness and culture, and temper[ed] the gloom of monastic solitude with the beauties of nature".