Joseph Mallord William Turner

Studies of Funerary Monuments from the Vatican Museums, Including the Tombstone of A. Antestius and his Family

1819

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 161 x 101 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D15119
Turner Bequest CLXXX 8

Catalogue entry

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 contains sketches of various funerary monuments, most or all of which were probably found in the Galleria Lapidaria (Lapidary Gallery) of the Museo Chiaramonti. The studies are numbered from top left to bottom right:
a.
Cecilia Powell has identified this sketch as the tombstone of A. Antestius and his family,1 from the Galleria Lapidaria (Lapidary Gallery) of the Museo Chiaramonti.2 Turner has transcribed the object’s Latin inscriptions as ‘A. ANTESTIVS AAL | SALVIVS’ and ‘ANTIOCHVS RVFA AL NICIA’.
b.
An unidentified funerary altar.
c.
Another unidentified funerary altar inscribed ‘[?SVD | SAIVRWV ...].
d.
In the bottom right-hand corner is an unidentified tombstone fragment. Turner has transcribed the extensive Latin text from the front of the object as ‘D | PVBLICO | LENTVLO | [?DECVRIA] VM | VASCVLARIO | PDVRDENVSEROS | FRATRIOPTVMO | PATRONO | INDOISENTISSIMO | OPTVME DFSEMERITO’.

Nicola Moorby
November 2009

1
Powell 1894, p.412.
2
See Walther Amelung, Die Sculpturen des Vaticanischen Museums, Berlin 1903–8, vol.I, ‘2. Galleria Lapidaria Seite 161–308’, no.31c, p.193, reproduced pl.24.

Read full Catalogue entry

You might like