Joseph Mallord William Turner

Three views of Rosyth Castle; and two of Roslin Castle

1818

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: 90 x 112 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D13545
Turner Bequest CLXVI 49

Catalogue entry

The sketch at the top of this page shows Rosyth Castle from the east with the north bank of the Firth of Forth in the foreground and the opposite bank beyond. In the foreground a boat is pulled up on the beach with a figure standing by and an inscription referring to a ‘quay’. This quay is now the site of the Rosyth Naval Dockyard. Below this is half of a sketch of Rosyth Castle (folio 48 verso; D13544) showing at the left the promontory on which the castle stands, with the south bank of the Forth opposite at the right of the page. At the top left of this page is the slight continuation from folio 48 verso of another sketch of Rosyth.
At the bottom of this page and continuing on folio 48 verso are two sketches of ruins on a hillside which may both show Roslin Castle. The sketch on the right in fact has a very similar composition to Turner’s watercolour of Roslin Castle, circa 1820 (Indianapolis Museum of Art),1 with the castle perched at the top of a steep bank and seen from across the glen. The other sketch may show the approach to the castle with the bridge across the ditch on the left.

Thomas Ardill
January 2008

1
Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, p.426 no.1065.

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