Turner Bequest CLXXX 77
Inscribed by John Ruskin in red ink ‘77’ top right, ascending right-hand edge
Stamped in black ‘CLXXX 77’ top right, ascending right-hand edge
Cecilia Powell has identified the sketch in the top left-hand corner as an ash urn,1 decorated with sculptural reliefs of erotes, garlands and masks. Today the object can be found in the Gabinetto dell’Hermes in the Cortile Ottagono (also known as the Cortile Ottagonale, formerly the Cortile del Belvedere) of the Museo Pio-Clementino.2 The drawing is annotated ‘254’ which presumably relates to an exhibit number displayed on the work. However, it does not appear to correspond to any known lists published within contemporary guide books or catalogues of the Vatican collections.
The sketch in the bottom left-hand corner represents the top of the funerary altar depicted in (c).
Powell has identified the subject of the sketch on the right-hand side of the page as the funerary altar of C. Clodius Apollinaris and C. Clodius Primitivus.3 Turner has transcribed the Latin text from the top and centre of the object ‘C. Clodivs APOLLINARIS | VA.VM. VI D VIII’ and ‘DIS MANIBUS’ and ‘CCLODIVS CF | PRIMITVVS VIXITANN | XIDIEBVS XXV | C CLODIUS SECVNDUS | ET CLODIA PRIMAF’. Today the altar can be found in the South Portico of the Cortile Ottagono (also known as the Cortile Ottagonale, formerly the Cortile del Belvedere) in the Museo Pio-Clementino.4
How to cite
Nicola Moorby, ‘Studies of Sculptural Fragments and Reliefs from the Vatican Museums, Including an Ash Urn and the Funerary Altar of C. Clodius Apollinaris and C. Clodius Primitivus 1819 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, December 2009, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, December 2012, https://www