Joseph Mallord William Turner'Dryope' 1805

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Artwork details

From Hesperides (2) Sketchbook
Turner Bequest XCIV
Date 1805
MediumPen and ink on paper
Dimensionssupport: 143 x 228 mm
Acquisition Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest XCIV 16
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Catalogue entry

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 16 Recto:
‘Dryope’ 1805
Turner Bequest XCIV 16
Pen and ink and brown wash on white wove paper, prepared with a grey wash, 143 x 228 mm
Inscribed by Turner in ink ‘Dryope’ bottom right
Inscribed by John Ruskin in red ink ‘16’ bottom left, descending vertically
Stamped in black ‘XCIV 16’ bottom left, descending vertically
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
By a woodland pool, the nymph Dryope stoops to pick a flower, as described in Book 9 of Ovid’s Metamorphoses. For Ovid subjects in this sketchbook see note to folio 13 (D05865). In the poem the episode shown here follows closely from the story of Hercules, terminating in his slaughter of Lichas depicted on folio 15 (D05867) and his own ensuing death. Dryope, who has been violated by Apollo, picks a flower for her son unaware that it is the chaste nymph Lotis, who has been changed into a flower while fighting off the attentions of Priapus. As punishment, Dryope will herself be transformed into a tree.
Blank save for some splashes of ink or wash and green watercolour

David Blayney Brown
December 2007

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