During his 1819 stay in Rome, one of Turner’s most extensive sketching campaigns was the large number of pencil studies made from the sculpture collections of the Vatican Museums (for a general discussion, see the introduction to the sketchbook). This page includes sketches of artefacts from the Egyptian collections. After 1839 these were housed in the Museo Gregoriano Egizio (Gregorian Egyptian Museum), founded by Pope Gregory XVI. Turner’s sketches include a torso of a statue of the bull god Apis (second from the right),1 and a statue of the goddess Isis with a child. Turner has labelled the latter ‘1359’ which presumably relates to an exhibit number displayed on the work. However, it does not appear to correspond to any known lists published within contemporary guide books or catalogues of the Vatican collections.
Possibly no.5.18 in the Hemicycle of the Museo Gregoriano Egizio, see cat. 22808, http://mv
.vatican .va /3_EN /pages /MEZ /MEZ_Sala05 .html>, accessed November 2009.