View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms
This sketch depicts a view of the heights of Camaldoli, the highest hill of Naples which rises above the north-west of the city. The building visible upon the summit is a monastery, the Eremo di Monte Giove. The artist’s viewpoint appears to be looking north-west from the slopes of the Posillipo Hill. The dark cavernous opening on the left-hand side may be the western entrance of the Grotto di Posillipo (today known as the Crypta Neapolitana), a tunnel built by the Romans to pass directly through the hill between Posillipo and Pozzuoli. Like many nineteenth-century tourists Turner seems to have journeyed through the tunnel in order to reach the historic sites to the west of Naples, and sketches of the eastern entrance (in present-day Parco Vergiliano) can be seen on folios 53 verso–54 verso (D15659–D15661; Turner Bequest CLXXXIV 51a–52a) and in the Naples: Rome C. Studies sketchbook (Tate D16098; Turner Bequest CLXXXVII 11).