Joseph Mallord William Turner

The River Parrett at Bridgwater

1811

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

Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 75 x 117 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D08662
Turner Bequest CXXIII 157

Catalogue entry

Turner shows the River Parrett from south-east of Bridgwater, crossed in the distance by the 1797 cast-iron Town Bridge (manufactured at Coalbrookdale but replaced in 1883)1 with its spandrels composed of diminishing circles. The slender spire of St Mary’s Church is towards the left. Beyond the bridge are the masts of cargo vessels which navigated the meandering tidal river from Bridgwater Bay, about seven miles to the north as the crow flies. Today the later Broadway bridge provides a similar viewpoint.
1
See R.A. Otter, Southern England, Civil Engineering Heritage, London 1994, pp.94–5, inluding photograph of the earlier bridge on p.94.
Technical notes:
There is some ink offsetting in the sky, from the inscription on folio 159 verso opposite (D08661; CXXIII 156a).
Verso:
Blank

Matthew Imms
June 2011

Read full Catalogue entry

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