Joseph Mallord William Turner

Fragments of Antique Funerary Monuments, ?Capua; and a Study of a Sailing Ship


View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 113 x 189 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXXVI 2

Catalogue entry

Turner’s handwritten inscription suggests that the artist drew these fragments of classical funerary monuments at Capua, a town approximately sixteen miles north of Naples which formed a staging post on the nineteenth-century route from Rome. He was immensely interested in antique statuary, particularly sculptural reliefs and decorative details from sarcophagi, altars, gravestones and vases, and studies can be found throughout his Italian sketchbooks of 1819. For further details see the Vatican Fragments sketchbook (Tate; Turner Bequest CLXXX).
Also on this page is a drawing of a large sailing ship, reminiscent of the one which appears in Turner’s watercolour vignette illustration, Bay of Naples for Rogers’s Italy (see Tate D27660; Turner Bequest CCLXXX 143). In the bottom right-hand corner is an inverted sketch of an unidentified landscape.

Nicola Moorby
July 2010

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