Joseph Mallord William Turner

Study of an Italian Rocca

1820

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Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 98 x 128 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D16757
Turner Bequest CXCII 64 a

Catalogue entry

This sketch is one of three studies depicting the same castle and gateway, see also folios 66 and 66 verso (D16758 and D16759; Turner Bequest CXCII 65 and 65a). The subject is currently unidentified although it is likely to be an Italian rocca or fortress, probably from somewhere in the north of the country. In addition to recording the appearance of the building, Turner has made a separate study of the coat of arms from above the entrance of the fortified gate and has also annotated the page with a Latin inscription. The text, which includes the date ‘MDCLXXVI (1676), can be transcribed as follows: ‘NOCÆTER NITHSET CHATI[...] ^[?UMI]^ | MONUMENTV DICAVIT ANO | MDCLXXI’ and ‘RAN EAR DVCI VI ARCHITORISMO | [?OAREM] SLOTTES F VISCOLNO’.

Nicola Moorby
April 2013

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