Catherwood was born in the London suburbs from Hoxton. After having followed conference series on Piranesi to the Royal Academy in 1820, it is interested in the Architecture and more particularly in the ancient monuments. It is then invited by the painter John Severn to go to Rome where it studies the classical architecture.
In 1824, whereas it is in Egypt to paint, it meets Robert Hay which is interested in its drawings and invites it to accompany it in a forwarding on the the Nile in order to draw and study the ruins of the ancient Egypt. It returned to London in 1835 after 9 years of exploration.
It meets then John L. Stephens at the time of a show of Brudford Panorama, company with which Catherwood was associated, and they become friendly. After the fire of New York in 1835, Catherwood goes to the the United States, the insistence of Stephens, to take part in the rebuilding of the city as an architect.
In October 1839, Stephens leaves on mission diplomatic in Central America and takes along Catherwood with him. November 17th, they begin the exploration of Copán that Stephens buys for 50 dollars, Catherwood carrying out its first drawings of Maya civilization there.
Catherwood falls sick then and they are obliged to return to New York in July 1840.
In October 1840, they set out again for a new forwarding. They explore then Mayapan, Uxmal again, then radiating this city towards many sites through the area, finishing their voyage by Labná, Chichén Itzá, Coba and Tulum.
They return to the in June 1841 United States.
In 1843, Stephens off publishes the account of their voyages, `'' Incidental travels in America Exchange''', illustrated of 120 drawings of Catherwood and which has a rapid success.
Catherwood republishes the book in 1854, after the untimely death of Stephens, adding a short biography of this one to it. In September of the same year, it embarks towards California on the S Arctic which, in a thick fog, strikes another boat with broad Newfoundland. Catherwood dies drowned like 300 others passagers.
Even if Catherwood were not the first Westerner to explore some of the Maya cities at least, it were however the first to illustrate with precision what it saw there, his predecessors, one thinks in particular of Jean-Frederic Waldeck, having sometimes a wild imagination. Its drawings thus have great archaeological value, since certain sites were degraded thereafter, but such an artistic.
- Maya Cities: Chichén Itzá, Copán, Izamal, Mayapan, Palenque, Tikal, Toniná, Tulum, Uxmal.
- John Lloyd Stephens
|Random links:||Marudu Gopalan Ramachandran | Championship of the world of Formula 1 1987 | Brossasco | Quintus Lutatius Catulus (consul in -102) | Catumbi | Oakdale,_l'Illinois|