Joseph Mallord William Turner

?Newcastle Emlyn, Cardiganshire: The Ruins of the Castle from the North-East


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

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 135 x 95 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest XL 63 a

Catalogue entry

The subject is continued on folio 66 recto opposite (D01572; Turner Bequest XL 64). Newcastle Emlyn is nine miles south-east of Cardigan, on the road from Carmarthen. Turner will have passed through the town on his way to Cilgerran, which he drew in the contemporary Hereford Court sketchbook (Tate D01279–D01281, D01342, D01354; Turner Bequest XXXVIII 28, 28a, 29, 88, 100).
The castle stands on a knoll around which the river Teifi curls in a loop. Founded by Maredudd ap Rhys in the mid-thirteenth century, it is a rare example of Welsh fortification in stone. The identification of the subject, however, is not secure, and there are considerable differences between Turner’s drawing and the castle itself as it is today. There appears to have been much dilapidation of some of the walls since he drew the ruin.

Andrew Wilton
May 2013

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