Waller Hugh Paton

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Waller Hugh Paton
by George Paul Chalmers
14 George Square in Edinburgh
The grave of Waller Hugh Paton, Grange Cemetery, Edinburgh

Waller Hugh Paton RSA RSW (27 July 1828 – 8 March 1895), was a Scottish landscape artist working in the second half of the 19th century.[1]

Early life[edit]

He was born in Wooer's Alley, Dunfermline, the son of Joseph Neil Paton (1797-1874) a damask designer and Catherine McDiarmid, his brother and sister were also artists: Joseph Noel Paton and Amelia Robertson Hill (the wife of David Octavius Hill).[2]


In his teens he worked with his father as a damask designer. From age twenty he trained under the mid-19th century artist, John Houston (1802–1884)[3] RSA, he was elected an associate of the Royal Scottish Academy (ARSA) in 1857 and became a full member (RSA) in 1865. In 1878 he became a member of the Royal Society of Watercolourists (RSW).

In 1858 he and his brother illustrated William Edmondstoune Aytoun's book, the "Lays of the Scottish Cavaliers"[4] (published in 1863).[5]

Personal life[edit]

From 1859 he lived in Edinburgh, initially staying with his brother Joseph in his huge Georgian townhouse at 37 Drummond Place in the New Town.[6]

In both 1861 and 1868 he toured the Continent with his friend, Donald MacKenzie Wallace, and brother, Joseph Noel Paton.

In 1862 he married Margaret Kinloch of Maryculter near Aberdeen, they had four sons and three daughters.

In 1875 he moved to 14 George Square, Edinburgh;[7] the house stood on the north side of the square facing along the line of houses on the west side. It was demolished in the 20th century.

His son Waller Hubert Paton (1863-1940) was a sculptor.[8]


He died at his home, 14 George Square, Edinburgh,[9] on 8 March 1895 from pleurisy, which had plagued him for the last 10 years of his life, he is buried in Grange Cemetery in southern Edinburgh.

Principal Works[edit]

Paton was one of the few of his generation to work "en plain air", the then fashion being to complete landscapes in the comfort of a studio, he enjoyed depicting the countryside of Perthshire, Aberdeenshire and especially the Isle of Arran. His work is typified by rich purple sunsets. See:[10]


  1. ^ Lee, Sidney, ed. (1895). "Paton, Waller Hugh" . Dictionary of National Biography. 44. London: Smith, Elder & Co.
  2. ^ Dictionary of National Biography: Waller Hugh Paton
  3. ^ Brydall, Robert (1889). Art in Scotland: Its Origin and Progress. Edinburgh; London: William Blackwood and Sons. pp. 422–423.
  4. ^ Aytoun, William Edmondstoune; Paton, Waller Hugh; Paton, J. Noël (26 February 1865). "Lays of the Scottish cavaliers and other poems". William Blackwood – via Hathi Trust.
  5. ^ Lays of the Scottish Cavaliers in libraries (WorldCat catalog)
  6. ^ Edinburgh Post Office Directory 1860
  7. ^ Edinburgh Post Office directory 1875
  8. ^ "Waller Hubert Paton - Mapping the Practice and Profession of Sculpture in Britain and Ireland 1851-1951". Retrieved 25 January 2017.
  9. ^ Edinburgh Post Office Directory 1870
  10. ^ 9 paintings by or after Waller Hugh Paton, Art UK. Retrieved 25 January 2017.
  • Oxford Dictionary of National Biography: Waller Hugh Paton
  • Dictionary of Scottish Art and Architecture, 2004

External link[edit]

Media related to Waller Hugh Paton at Wikimedia Commons