With similar details on folio 26 (D07893) these were drawn at Lowther Castle during Turner’s visit in 1809, for which see Introduction to the sketchbook. The castle was still under construction, in Gothic style to the designs of Robert Smirke. Turner’s two pictures, Lowther Castle, Westmorland, the Seat of the Earl of Lonsdale: North-West View from Ullswater Lane: Evening and Lowther Castle, Westmorland, the Seat of the Earl of Lonsdale (the North Front), with the River Lowther: Mid-day exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1810 (private collection),1 showed the building at some distance, in its landscape setting, so hardly required this level of detail. However, Turner’s personal interest in architecture and in contemporary Gothic Revival houses spurred him to make these close-up studies.
Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, revised ed., New Haven and London revised ed.1984, pp.78–9 nos.111,112 (pls.116, 117).