J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Elgin Cathedral from the South-West 1831

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 24 Verso:
Elgin Cathedral from the South-West 1831
Turner Bequest CCLXXVII 24a
Pencil on off-white wove paper, 104 x 163 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
This sketch looks north up King Street in the northern Scottish city of Elgin, with Elgin Cathedral behind a row of houses at the right. The two largely intact towers at the west end of the cathedral are at the left, with the remains of the south side of the nave, the south transept and east end at the right. On the left side of the road is the Manse of the Precentor, more commonly known as the Bishop’s House (see folio 132 verso and 133; D27204, D27205).
The sketch is out of sequence with the rest of Turner’s depictions of the cathedral, which are all towards the end of the sketchbook (see folio 139; D27215 for references), suggesting that this was either the first sketch that Turner made of the cathedral, or a final sketch made as an afterthought after completing his other studies.

Thomas Ardill
May 2010

How to cite

Thomas Ardill, ‘Elgin Cathedral from the South-West 1831 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, May 2010, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, December 2012, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-elgin-cathedral-from-the-south-west-r1135446, accessed 23 May 2018.