View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms
As identified by Finberg, the drawing on this page is a detail of a ship’s rigging, specifically the bowsprit.1
Made with the page turned vertically, this drawing is confined within the top portion of the sheet. Composed at a diagonal, reflecting Turner’s position on the deck of the vessel, the bowsprit stretches from its heel at right, inscribed ‘H’ by Turner, to the tip of the jib boom at the top edge, towards the left. The artist demonstrates intense interest in the complex network of ropes and timber, inscribing particular elements as he goes.
Gerald Wilkinson reproduces an image of this page in support of his statement that in this sketchbook and the Folkestone sketchbook of around 1821–2 (Tate; Turner Bequest CXCVIII), ‘the pencil is hard and the detail remarkably thorough, even for [Turner]’.2