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

Tour of the West Country 1811

Corfe Castle from the South-West 1811 (from the Corfe to Dartmouth sketchbook)

From the entry

Turner undertook an extensive tour of the region popularly known as the West Country of England in the summer of 1811. In a diary entry for 14 May 1812, Joseph Farington recorded a visit to the annual one-man exhibition at his fellow Royal Academician’s private London gallery in Queen Anne Street West: Turner’s Gallery I went to. His Father told me that Turner was out of town two months last Summer viz: from the middle of July to the middle of Septr. Making views on the Coast of Dorsetshire – Devonshire – Cornwall & Somersetshire – for Cooke’s work. Farington’s own tour of many of the same places in the autumn of 1810 perhaps prompted his conversation with Turner’s father as he viewed six oil paintings of Devon and Cornwall subjects, listed below along with the sketches on which they were based: The River Plym, untraced ever since; possibly the work now known as Hulks on the Tamar (Tate T03881; displayed at Petworth House, West Sussex) ...
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Devonshire Coast, No.1 sketchbook 1811
D08362–D08806, D40902–D40906, D41520, D41521
Turner Bequest CXXIII 1–250
Corfe to Dartmouth sketchbook 1811
D08807–D08822, D08824, D08826–D08842, D08844, D08846, D08848–D08863, D08940, D40821, D41522
Turner Bequest CXXIV 1–48
Ivy Bridge to Penzance sketchbook 1811
D08865–D08939, D40815–D40817
Turner Bequest CXXV 1–48
Cornwall and Devon sketchbook 1811
D08941–D08942; D41275–D41296, D41299–D41373
Turner Bequest CXXV a 1–78
Stonehenge sketchbook 1811
D41374–D41388
Turner Bequest CXXV b 1–15
Somerset and North Devon sketchbook 1811
D08945–D08964, D40294–D40295, D41531
Turner Bequest CXXVI 1–18
Turner undertook an extensive tour of the region popularly known as the West Country of England in the summer of 1811. In a diary entry for 14 May 1812, Joseph Farington recorded a visit to the annual one-man exhibition at his fellow Royal Academician’s private London gallery in Queen Anne Street West:
Turner’s Gallery I went to. His Father told me that Turner was out of town two months last Summer viz: from the middle of July to the middle of Septr. Making views on the Coast of Dorsetshire – Devonshire – Cornwall & Somersetshire – for Cooke’s work.1
Farington’s own tour of many of the same places in the autumn of 18102 perhaps prompted his conversation with Turner’s father as he viewed six oil paintings of Devon and Cornwall subjects, listed below along with the sketches on which they were based:
The River Plym,3 untraced ever since; possibly the work now known as Hulks on the Tamar (Tate T03881; displayed at Petworth House, West Sussex);4 no direct source identified, but see Tate D08871 (Turner Bequest CXXV 6)
Teignmouth (Tate T03882; displayed at Petworth);5 sketches: Tate D08789 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 239v), Tate D08851, D08852 (Turner Bequest CXXIV 36–37)
Saltash with the Water Ferry (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York);6 sketch: Tate D08487 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 62a)
Ivy Bridge Mill, Devonshire (private collection);7 sketch: Tate D08938 (Turner Bequest CXXV 47)
St Mawes in the Pilchard Season (Tate N00484);8 sketches: Tate D08620 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 133), Tate D08909 (Turner Bequest CXXV 30)
Turner had visited the counties Farington notes, as well as sites in Buckinghamshire, Hampshire and Wiltshire. Except for an apparently isolated visit to Dunster Castle in Somerset in the late 1790s, when he might possibly have gone a little further west to meet his father’s North Devon relatives,9 he seems not to have ventured previously beyond Wiltshire and Bristol. Some sites to the south-west had been listed on the flyleaf of the 1798 Dinevor Castle sketchbook (Tate D41434) and in the Dolbadarn sketchbook, in use a little later (Tate D02174, D02175; Turner Bequest XLVI 119 and 119a), and on 6 April 1805 he had written to his Wiltshire patron Sir Richard Colt Hoare about fulfilling an ongoing commission: ‘perhaps I may be able before I go to Devonshire, but even then I fear the Summer will be far advanced.’10 However, there is no further evidence of such a trip at that time.
There must have been some prior notice of Turner’s 1811 tour. His subsequent friend and executor, Sir Charles Lock Eastlake, then a seventeen-year-old Royal Academy student and a native of Plymouth, wrote to his father there in July: ‘What he [Turner] wants is to go on board some large ship, and I daresay George [Eastlake’s brother] will be very happy to take him on board the Salvadore, and perhaps into the Dockyard, &c. He is the first landscape painter now in the world ... I hope all at Plymouth will be attentive to him’.11 Eastlake would be one of Turner’s companions during his 1813 visit to Devon, covered in a separate section of the present catalogue.
Turner’s main focus was a thorough survey of key sites along the coast. The paintings shown at his gallery were really by-products of his topographical research for watercolours commissioned by W.B. Cooke for a proposed series of engraved Picturesque Views on the Southern Coast of England (see below for an outline of the project and list of the compositions).12 As well as quoting Farington’s diary, Finberg established the widest possible time-frame for the tour by noting Turner’s presence at a Royal Academy Council meeting on Thursday 11 July and his absence the following week (16 July), his next attendance being on Monday 7 October at ‘the first Council meeting of the season’.13 Further evidence of the route appears in Turner’s own extensive list of numbered banknotes at the back of the Devonshire Coast, No.1 sketchbook, annotated with the places at which they were spent or broken14 (see the entries for Tate D40905, D40906; verso of Turner Bequest CXXIII 253 and inside back cover), and brief accounts from the very beginning of the tour in the same book (Tate D08362; Turner Bequest CXXIII 1).
Combining entries from these documentary sources with the main subjects he had identified in his 1909 Inventory of the Turner Bequest, Finberg was able to draw up an itinerary,15 with which a selection of further sites (many of which he also recognised) is incorporated here:
Buckinghamshire:– Ankerwycke; Surrey: Egham, Bagshot; Hampshire:– Blackwater, Hook; Wiltshire:– via Salisbury; the beginning of the main coastal tour in western Hampshire (now part of Dorset):– Christchurch; Dorset:– Poole, Corfe Castle, Swanage, Lulworth, Dorchester, Weymouth, Portland, Bridport, Charmouth, Lyme Regis; South Devon:– Sidmouth, Exeter, Teignmouth, Torbay, Brixham, Newton Abbot, Berry Pomeroy, Dartmouth, Totnes, Ivybridge, Plympton, Plymouth; Cornwall:– Saltash, Looe, Fowey, Lostwithiel and Restormel Castle, St Mawes, Falmouth, Penzance, St Michael’s Mount, Land’s End, St Ives, Redruth, Bodmin, Wadebridge, Padstow, Tintagel, Boscastle, Bude; North Devon:– Clovelly, Bideford, Barnstaple, Ilfracombe, Combe Martin; Somerset:– Minehead, Dunster, Watchet, Bridgwater, Cheddar Gorge, Glastonbury, Wells, Frome; Wiltshire:– Stonehenge, Amesbury, and returning to London via Salisbury
Finberg also listed Basingstoke, Hampshire, at the start of the tour, but the relevant sketches fall towards the end of the Devonshire Coast, No.1 sketchbook, suggesting that they were drawn on the way back.
Farington’s route by mail coach to Salisbury on the early stages of his 1810 West Country trip, recorded in his notebook-diary, may have been Turner’s too: ‘Staines | Bagshot | Hartford Bridge [Hartfordbridge] | Basingstoke | Overton | Andover’.16 Taking Salisbury as the start and end of the main tour, Turner’s journey comprised a continuous clockwise circuit of very roughly six hundred miles. He was said to have made brief visits to his Devon-born father’s relatives on opposite sides of the county at Exeter and Barnstaple,17 but apart from Farington’s diary and Eastlake’s letter there are no independent contemporary documents relating to his West Country activities in 1811, unlike the extensive reports of his return visit to Devon in 1813. Turner probably also went there again in 1814, and these trips are dealt with in a separate section of the present catalogue. Focusing as he did on Continental tours from 1817 onwards, he seems never to have returned to the region, but his sketches provided source material for many years to come.
Six sketchbooks were used on the 1811 tour, only three of which are of conventional construction. Devonshire Coast, No.1 (Turner Bequest CXXIII) is actually a copy of Samuel Coltman’s British Itinerary, a small printed book of distances between places with interleaved blank pages. It was used continually except along the far western and northern coasts of Cornwall, sometimes supplemented by more detailed studies of the same sites in the larger sketchbooks. Corfe to Dartmouth (Turner Bequest CXXIV) and Ivy Bridge to Penzance (Turner Bequest CXXV), two similar, conventional sketchbooks, record Dorset, South Devon and the south coast of Cornwall as far as St Michael’s Mount. Cornwall and Devon (Turner Bequest CXXV a) covers the far west of Cornwall and the northern coast of these counties as far as Combe Martin; it appears to have been a sheaf of loose sheets, bound comparatively recently. Somerset and North Devon (Turner Bequest CXXVI), broken up at an unknown date, ranges from Ilfracombe in Devon to Dunster in Somerset. Finally, Stonehenge (CXXV b), originally another bundle of loose sheets, records the ancient Wiltshire monument in detail, along with Cheddar Gorge, encountered in Somerset earlier on the homeward leg.
The Vale of Heathfield sketchbook (Tate; Turner Bequest CXXXVII), named after one of its Sussex subjects, was in use over a few years before and after 1811, and includes notes from a guidebook on Dorset and Devon sites which Turner visited that year (Tate D10206, D40864; Turner Bequest CXXXVII 1 and inside the front cover). It may, as Finberg notes, have ‘formed part of Turner’s baggage on his “Southern Coast” tour’,18 and includes views of Christchurch and Lulworth Cove, visited in 1811 and recorded at that time in other sketchbooks, as well as of sites associated with the 1813 stay in Devon, but it is grouped with other Sussex material in the present catalogue.
There have been various detailed accounts of the commissioning and execution of the Picturesque Views on the Southern Coast of England project by W.B. Cooke and his associates, in collaboration with publishers John Murray and the Arches, particularly in terms of Turner’s watercolours and the engravings made from them.19 Initially he was asked to provide twenty-four designs, but his contribution eventually ran to forty. As indicated below, some were based on later sketches.
It is a moot point as to quite when Turner composed the extensive descriptive and narrative verses relating to the West Country, which he proposed to publish as an accompaniment to his Southern Coast designs, in the Devonshire Coast, No.1 sketchbook (Tate; Turner Bequest CXXIII). The issue is discussed in the introduction to that book.
The engravings were issued between 1814 and 1826 and subsequently as a book, published by John and Arthur Arch and others as Picturesque Views on the Southern Coast of England, from Drawings Made Principally by J.M.W. Turner, R.A. and Engraved by W.B. Cooke, George Cooke, and Other Eminent Engravers (London 1826). A copy with volumes I and II bound as one is held in the Tate Britain Prints and Drawings Room, and separately accessioned plates in the Tate Collection are noted below.
The West Country designs are listed below as numbered and titled in the 1826 edition, which presents the overall series in sequence, following the coast clockwise from Whitstable in Kent to Watchet in Somerset – that is, from the Thames Estuary via the South Coast to the Bristol Channel. Details of the source watercolours are given, as are references to the most directly relevant pencil sketches. Turner often made other drawings at the same sites, which are cross-referenced in individual catalogue entries. The smaller engravings after other artists, of which there are impressions in the Tate Collection, are listed in sequence; Turner also drew some of these places.
Dorset: vol.I, plates:
40. Poole, Dorsetshire. Watercolour, circa 1812 (private collection); engraved 1814: Tate T04372, T05326–T05337.20 Sketch: Tate D08387 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 14)
41. Corfe Castle, Dorsetshire. Watercolour, circa 1812 (Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, Massachusetts); engraved 1814: Tate T04377, T05338–T05346, T05966.21 Sketch: Tate D08826 (Turner Bequest CXXIV 17)
42. Lulworth Cove, Dorsetshire. Watercolour, circa 1812 (untraced); engraved 1814: Tate T04376, T05347, T05348, T05965.22 Sketch: Tate D08833 (Turner Bequest CXXIV 22)
[43. Lulworth Cliffs, Dorsetshire. Undated engraving after Samuel Prout: Tate T05349, T05350]
44. Lulworth Castle | Dorsetshire. Watercolour, circa 1820 (Yale Center for British Art, New Haven); engraved 1821: Tate T04400, T04401, T05351–T05359, T05984.23 Sketch: Tate D08828 (Turner Bequest CXXIV 19)
Dorset: vol.II, plates:
45. Weymouth, Dorsetshire. Watercolour, circa 1811 (Yale Center for British Art, New Haven); engraved 1814: Tate T04375, T05360, T05361, T05362, T05964.24 Sketches: Tate D08445, D08446 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 44, 44a)
[46. Weymouth Castle, Dorsetshire. Undated engraving after Samuel Prout: Tate T05363, T05364. Compare Turner’s sketch: Tate D08836 (Turner Bequest CXXIV 25)]
47. Bow and Arrow Castle, Isle of Portland, Dorsetshire. Watercolour, circa 1815 (University of Liverpool); engraved 1817: Tate T04391, T05365, T05366, T05975:25 Sketches: Tate D08837, D08838 (Turner Bequest CXXIV 26, 27)
48. Bridport, Dorsetshire. Watercolour, circa 1818 (Bury Art Gallery and Museum); engraved 1820: Tate T04398, T04399, T05367, T05368, T05982.26 Sketch: Tate D08452 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 47a)
49. Lyme Regis, Dorsetshire. Watercolour, circa 1812 (Glasgow Museums); engraved 1814: Tate T04378, T04379, T05369, T05370, T05967.27 Sketch: Tate D08841 (Turner Bequest CXXIV 29a)
One of the unengraved watercolours related to the series by Andrew Wilton appears to be a view of the Isle of Wight from Christchurch, Dorset (then in Hampshire), the first coastal site on the 1811 tour: Coast Scene, with White Cliffs and Boats, ?circa 1815–20 (Yale Center for British Art, New Haven).28 Sketches: D08403, D08411 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 22, 27).
Devon (south coast): vol.II, plates:
[50. Salcombe, Devonshire. 1824 engraving after William Collins: Tate T05371]
[51. Sidmouth. 1821 engraving after William Collins: Tate T05372, T05373. Compare Turner’s sketch: Tate D08734 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 203a)]
[52. Dawlish. 1820 engraving after Luke Clennell: Tate T05374, T05375. Compare Turner’s slight sketch: Tate D08498 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 68)]
53. Teignmouth, Devonshire. Watercolour, circa 1813 (Yale Center for British Art, New Haven); engraved 1815: Tate T04380, T05376–T05384, T05968.29 Sketches: Tate D08789 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 239v); Tate D08851, D08852 (Turner Bequest CXXIV 36–37)
54. Torbay from Brixham. Watercolour, circa 1816–17 (Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge); engraved 1821: Tate T04402, T04403, T05385–T05387, T05985, T05986.30 Sketches: Tate D08466, D08470 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 53a, 55a); Tate D08863 (Turner Bequest CXXIV 48)
[55. Dartmouth Castle. 1825 engraving after Samuel Prout: Tate T05388, T05389. Compare Turner’s sketches: Tate D08366, D08785 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 3, 237); and his watercolour Dartmouth Castle, on the River Dart (Tate D18137; Turner Bequest CCVIII D),31 engraved for the Rivers of England series in 1824]
56. Dartmouth, Devonshire. Watercolour, circa 1814 (untraced); engraved 1815: Tate T04381, T04382, T05390, T05391, T05969.32 Sketches: Tate D08527, D08564 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 84, 103)
57. The Mew Stone, at the Entrance of Plymouth Sound, Devonshire. Watercolour, circa 1814 (National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin); engraved 1816: Tate T04383–T04385, T05392, T05393, T05970.33 No 1811 sketches; see the Plymouth, Hamoaze sketchbook (Tate; Turner Bequest CXXXI) under the 1813 tour
[58. Hall Sands. 1821 engraving after William Collins (Hallsands, near Start Point): Tate T05394, Tate T05395]
59. Plymouth. With Mount Batten, from Turn Chapel, Looking over Catwater. Watercolour, circa 1816 (Victoria and Albert Museum, London); engraved 1817: Tate T04388, T05396, T05397, T05973.34 Sketch: Tate D08878, D08879 (Turner Bequest CXXV 11a–12)
60. Plymouth Dock, (seen from Mount Edgecumbe) Devonshire. Watercolour, circa 1814 (Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery); engraved 1816: T04387, T05398–T05400, T05972.35 Sketch: Tate D08877 (Turner Bequest CXXV 11)
61. Mount Edgecomb, Devonshire. Watercolour, circa 1818 (untraced); engraved 1826: Tate T05401, T04423, T05999.36 No matching 1811 sketches; see the 1813 Plymouth, Hamoaze sketchbook (Tate D09223; Turner Bequest CXXXI 6)
[62. Edystone Light House. 1814 engraving after Samuel Owen: Tate T05402, T05403. Compare Turner’s studies, perhaps made in 1813, in the Vale of Heathfield sketchbook (Tate D10257, D10258, D10260; Turner Bequest CXXXVII 39, 40, 41)]
Wilton also lists an untraced watercolour of about 1820, Plymouth Harbour: Towing in French Prizes, as a related subject.37 A long-unrecorded watercolour of Babbacombe Bay from near Teignmouth (private collection) has been dated to about 1811 and related to the Southern Coast by Eric Shanes;38 Babbacombe is mentioned in Turner’s poetry in the Devonshire Coast, No.1 sketchbook (Tate D08670; Turner Bequest CXXIII 161a), and there appears to be a small, related sketch in the same book (Tate D08491; Turner Bequest CXXIII 64a), together with another view of the same coastline (Tate D08498; Turner Bequest CXXIII 68).
Cornwall: vol.II, plates:
63. East and West Looe, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1815 (Manchester Art Gallery); engraved 1818: Tate T04393, T04394, T05404, T05405, T05977, T05978.39 Sketch: Tate D08887 (Turner Bequest CXXV 17a)
64. Entrance of Fowey Harbour, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1818 (private collection); engraved 1820: Tate T05406–T05408, T05983.40 Sketch: D08889, D08890 (Turner Bequest CXXV 18a–19)
65. Falmouth Harbour, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1812–14 (Lady Lever Art Gallery, Port Sunlight); engraved 1816: Tate T04386, T05409, T05410, T05971.41 Sketches: Tate D08538, D08576, D08579 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 89a, 109a, 111)
66. Pendennis Castle and entrance of Falmouth Harbour, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1816 (private collection); engraved 1817: Tate T04389, T04390, T05411–T05418, T05974.42 Sketch: Tate D08905 (Turner Bequest CXXV 27)
67. St. Mawes, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1823 (Yale Center for British Art, New Haven); engraved 1824: Tate T05421, T04409–T04411, T05419, T05420.43 Sketches: Tate D08620 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 133), Tate D08909 (Turner Bequest CXXV 30)
68. St. Michael’s Mount, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1812 (private collection); engraved 1814: Tate T04370, T04371, T05422, T05423.44 Sketch: D08911, D08912 (Turner Bequest CXXV 31a–32)
[69. The Logan Stone. 1818 engraving after Peter De Wint (letterpress: ‘Treryn Castle, in the parish of St. Levan’): Tate T05424, T05425. Compare Turner’s sketch: Tate D41296 (Turner Bequest CXXV a 21)]
70. Land’s End, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1813 (untraced); engraved 1814: Tate T04373, T04374, T05426–T05433, T05963.45 Sketch: Tate D08941 (Turner Bequest CXXV 50, bound as CXXV a 22)
[71. Lands End, Cornwall, with Long-ships Light-house. 1814 engraving after Samuel Owen: Tate T05434, T05435. Compare Turner’s sketch: Tate D41301 (Turner Bequest CXXV a 25)]
72. Tintagel Castle, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1815 (Museum of Fine Arts, Boston); engraved 1818: Tate T05436–T05443, T05980.46 Sketch: Tate D41308 (Turner Bequest CXXV a 32)
73. Boscastle, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1824 (Ashmolean Museum, Oxford); engraved 1825: Tate T05444, T05445, T05995.47 Sketch: Tate D08705 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 182)
Devon (north coast): vol.II, plates:
74. Clovelly Bay, Somersetshire [sic]. Watercolour, circa 1822 (National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin); engraved 1824: Tate T05446, T05990.48 Sketch: Tate D08766 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 223)
75. Ilfracomb, North Devon. Watercolour, circa 1813–16 (private collection); engraved 1818: T04395, T04396, T05447, T05448, T05979.49 No direct sketch identified, but see other views in the Devonshire Coast, No.1 and Cornwall and Devon sketchbooks (Tate; Turner Bequest CXXIII, CXXVI)
76. Combe Martin. Watercolour, circa 1824 (Ashmolean Museum, Oxford); engraved 1825: Tate T04416, T04417, T04418, T05449, T05993.50 Sketch: D08646 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 147)
[77. Linmouth, or Lynemouth. 1824 engraving after William Collins: Tate T05450, T05451. A very generic composition; compare Turner’s detailed views of Lynmouth in the Somerset and North Devon sketchbook (Tate; Turner Bequest CXXVI)]
Somerset: vol.II, plates:
[78. Porlock. 1824 engraving after William Collins: Tate T05452. As with pl.77 above, very generalised; compare Turner’s study in the Somerset and North Devon sketchbook (Tate D08958; Turner Bequest CXXVI 12)]
79. Minehead and Dunster Castle, Somersetshire. Watercolour, circa 1820 (Lady Lever Art Gallery, Port Sunlight); engraved 1821: Tate T04404, T05453, T05454, T05987.51 Sketch: Tate D08672 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 162a)
80. Watchet, Somersetshire. Watercolour, circa 1818 (untraced); engraved 1820: Tate T04397, T05455–T05463, T05981.52 Sketch: Tate D08687 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 170a)
Turner’s Southern Coast subjects from counties further east, for which many of the watercolour designs are traced, were engraved as follows: Bexhill (1817),53 Margate (1824),54 Rye (1824),55 Ramsgate (1824),56 Hythe (1824),57 Portsmouth (1825),58 Brighton (1825),59 Folkestone (1826),60 Deal (1826),61 Dover (1826),62 Whitstable (1826);63 further related but unengraved subjects listed by Wilton are Dover,64 Rye65 and Margate.66
There are numerous other West Country watercolours, mostly associated with engraving projects, which are sometimes based on later drawings. They are grouped here for convenience:
The Rivers of Devon, 1815–23:67
Plymouth Citadel. Watercolour, circa 1813 (untraced); engraved 1815, published 1823 as a pair with the subsequent composition: Tate T06009, T05785.68 1813 sketches: Tate D09224, D09225 (Turner Bequest CXXXI 7, 8)
Plymouth Sound. Watercolour, circa 1813 (untraced); engraved 1815, published 1823 as a pair with the preceding: Tate T06010, T05786.69 1813 sketches: Tate D09226, D09227 (Turner Bequest CXXXI 9, 10)
Ivy Bridge, Devonshire. Watercolour, circa 1813 (Tate D18157; Turner Bequest CCVIII X); engraved 1816, published 1821: Tate T06011.70 Compare Tate D08655 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 153a); main 1813 sketch: Tate D09722 (Turner Bequest CXXXIII 45)
Source of the Tamar and Torridge. Watercolour, circa 1813 (Yale Center for British Art, New Haven); engraved 1816, published 1850: Tate T07093.71 No sketch identified; possibly originating from the 1811 tour72
The following work was not engraved for the series, but has been linked to it:73
The Banks of the Tavy (‘Sunshine on the Tamar’). Watercolour, circa 1813 (Ashmolean Museum, Oxford); chromo-lithograph 1855 (no Tate impression).74 1813 sketch: Tate D10285 (Turner Bequest CXXXVII 53a)
Marine Views, 1824–5:75
The Eddystone Lighthouse. Watercolour, circa 1817 (private collection); engraved 1824: Tate T04820.76 Sketches: perhaps made in 1813, in the Vale of Heathfield sketchbook (Tate D10257, D10258, D10260; Turner Bequest CXXXVII 39, 40, 41)
The following work was not engraved for the series, but has been linked to it:77
Off St Alban’s Head.¬†Watercolour, circa 1822 (Mercer Art Gallery, Harrogate Museums and Arts).78 Sketch: Folkestone sketchbook, circa 1821 (Tate D17300; Turner Bequest CXCVIII 57)
The Rivers of England, 1823–7:79
Dartmouth Castle, on the River Dart. Watercolour, 1822 (Tate D18137; Turner Bequest CCVIII D); engraved 1824: Tate T04802–T04804.80 Sketches: compare Tate D08366, D08785 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 3, 237)
Okehampton Castle, on the River Okement. Watercolour, circa 1824 (Tate D18138; Turner Bequest CCVIII E); engraved 1825: Tate T04805–T04807.81 1813 sketch: Tate D09872 (Turner Bequest CXXXIV 71)
Dartmouth, on the River Dart. Watercolour, circa 1824 (Tate D18136; Turner Bequest CCVIII C); engraved 1825: Tate T04808.82 Sketch: Tate D08788 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 239)
Totnes, on the Dart. Watercolour, circa 1824 (Tate D18135; Turner Bequest CCVIII B); engraved 1827, but cancelled: Tate T04819.83 Sketch: Tate D08542 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 91a); see also 1813 sketch, Tate D09726 (Turner Bequest CXXXIII 48)
The Ports of England, 1826–8; and The Harbours of England, 185684
Sidmouth. Watercolour, circa 1824 (Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester); engraved 1828, published 1856 (no Tate impression).85 Sketch: Tate D08734 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 203a)
Plymouth. Watercolour, circa 1825 (Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon); engraved 1828, published 1856: Tate T04835.86 Sketch: Tate D08878, D08879 (Turner Bequest CXXV 11a–12)
Catwater, Plymouth. Watercolour, circa 1826 (Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts, Hobart, Tasmania): engraved 1828, published 1856: Tate T04836.87 Compare 1813 sketches: Tate D09224, D09225 (Turner Bequest CXXXI 7, 8)
Falmouth. Watercolour, circa 1825 (Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts); engraved 1828, published 1856: Tate T04837, T06373.88 Sketch: Tate D08643 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 145a)
Little Liber, c.1820–589
The Mew-stone, engraved circa 1825. Watercolour study: Tate D17170 (Turner Bequest CXCVI F);90 for pencil sketches see the 1813 Plymouth, Hamoaze sketchbook (Tate; Turner Bequest CXXXI)
Picturesque Views in England and Wales, 1827–3891
Dartmouth Cove. Watercolour, circa 1825 (The Morgan Library & Museum, New York); engraved 1827: Tate T04507, T40508.92 1813 sketch: Tate D09741 (Turner Bequest CXXXIII 57v)
Launceston, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1826 (private collection); engraved 1827: Tate T04515, T04516.93 1813 sketch: Tate D09873 (Turner Bequest CXXXIV 72)
Saltash, Cornwall. Watercolour, 1825 (British Museum, London); engraved 1827: Tate T04519, T04520, T06075.94 1813 sketch: Tate D09698 (Turner Bequest CXXXIII 26)
Buckfastleigh Abbey, Devonshire. Watercolour, circa 1826 (Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Exeter); engraved 1828: Tate T04528, T04529, T06079; and T06134, T06629 (smaller plate).95 1813 sketch: Tate D09855 (Turner Bequest CXXXIV 57)
Entrance to Fowey Harbour, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1827 (Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts); engraved 1829: Tate T04530, T04531.96 Sketch: Tate D08889, D08890 (Turner Bequest CXXV 18a–19)
Okehampton, Devonshire. Watercolour, circa 1826 (National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne); engraved 1828: Tate T04532, T04533, T06080.97 Compare 1813 sketch: Tate D09816 (Turner Bequest CXXXIV 24)
Exeter, circa 1827 (Manchester Art Gallery): engraved 1829: Tate T04541, T05082, T06081.98 No direct sketch identified; see the entry for Tate D08844 (Turner Bequest CXXIV 31), another Exeter view
Stone Henge. Watercolour, circa 1827 (Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum); engraved 1829: Tate T04548, T04549, T06083.99 No direct sketch identified; see the introduction to the 1811 Stonehenge sketchbook (Tate; Turner Bequest CXXV b)
Devonport and Dockyard, Devonshire. Watercolour, circa 1828 (Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, Massachusetts); engraved 1830: Tate T04551, T04552, T06084.100 No direct sketch identified
Trematon Castle, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1828 (untraced); engraved 1830: Tate T04563, T04564.101 Compare 1813 sketch: Tate D09263 (Turner Bequest CXXXI 43)
St. Mawes, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1828 (untraced); engraved 1830: Tate T04565, T04566, T06090.102 Sketch: Tate D08620 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 133); see also Tate D08909 (Turner Bequest CXXV 30)
Plymouth, Devonshire. Watercolour, circa 1830 (Victoria and Albert Museum, London); engraved 1832: Tate T04584, T04585, T06095.103 No direct sketch identified but see the 1813 Plymouth, Hamoaze sketchbook (Tate; Turner Bequest CXXXI) for many local studies
Long-ships Lighthouse, Lands End. Watercolour, circa 1835 (J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles); engraved 1836 (no Tate impression).104 Sketch: compare Tate D41303 (Turner Bequest CXXV a 27)
Lyme Regis, Norfolk [sic, but actually Dorset]. Watercolour, circa 1834 (Cincinnati Art Museum); engraved 1836: Tate T04605.105 Sketches: compare Tate D08439 (Turner Bequest CXXIII 41) and Tate D08841 (Turner Bequest CXXIV 29a)
Mount St. Michael, Cornwall. Watercolour, circa 1836 (University of Liverpool); engraved 1838:106 Tate T04612, T06129, T06339. Sketches: compare Tate D08931, D08932 (Turner Bequest CXXV 42a, 43)
The watercolour vignette of The Bellerophon, Plymouth Sound was made in about 1833 as an illustration to Sir Walter Scott’s Life of Napoleon (private collection; engraved 1835: Tate T04982, T06270).107 It depicts Napoleon after his 1815 surrender as a tiny, distant figure on board HMS Bellerophon, surrounded by sight-seers in small boats, but with no land showing.
Apart from Crossing the Brook, exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1815 (Tate N00497)108 and based on sketches made on the 1813 tour discussed elsewhere in this catalogue, only two further West Country oil paintings are known, from much later in Turner’s career. Of these, The Prince of Orange, William III, Embarked from Holland, and Landed at Torbay, November 4th, 1688, after a Stormy Passage, exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1832 (Tate N00369)109 is a historical piece with contemporary political resonances, but, as with the Bellerophon vignette, the setting is at sea. However, St Michael’s Mount, Cornwall, exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1834 (Victoria and Albert Museum, London),110 is related to 1811 studies, being based on the Southern Coast design (1826 edition, pl.68) listed above.
1
Cave 1983, p.4127; entry partly quoted in Finberg 1961, p.182.
2
See Kathryn Cave (ed.), The Diary of Joseph Farington, vol.X, New Haven and London 1982, pp.3717–817.
3
Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, revised ed., New Haven and London 1984, p.84 no.118; see also Smiles 2006, pp.18–19 for these works.
4
Ibid., pp.84–5 no.119, pl.126.
5
Ibid., p.85 no.120, pl.127 (colour).
6
Ibid., pp.85–6 no.121, pl.125.
7
Ibid., pp.86–7 no.122, pl.128.
8
Ibid., p.87 no.123, pl.129.
9
Smiles 2006 pp.13, 51 note 3; see also Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, pp.312–13 nos.119–121, and Eric Shanes, ‘Picture in Focus: Dunster Castle, Somersetshire, South-West View’ and ‘Picture in Focus: Dunster Castle, Somersetshire, North-East View’, Turner Studies, vol.1, no.1, [Summer 1981], pp.50–1 and 52 respectively.
10
John Gage, Collected Correspondence of J.M.W. Turner with an Early Diary and a Memoir by George Jones, Oxford 1980, p.25 letter no.8; quoted in Smiles 2006, p.13.
11
Letter transcribed in Lady Eastlake, ‘Memoir of Sir Charles Lock Eastlake’ in Sir Charles Lock Eastlake, Contributions to the Literature of the Fine Arts: Second Series, London 1870, p.23; quoted in Gage 1968, p.678, Hamilton 1997, p.145, and Smiles 2006, p.19; see also Sam Smiles, ‘Turner in Devon: Some Additional Information Concerning his Visits in the 1810s’, Turner Studies, vol.7, no.1, Summer 1987, pp.11–14..
12
For some general accounts of the tour and the Southern Coast project see: Finberg 1961, pp.182–3; Gage 1987, pp.42, 44, 195–7; Wilton 1987, pp.102–4, 124; Hamilton 1997, pp.142–6; Kennedy 2001, pp.64–5, 76; Hamilton 2003, pp.99–108; Smiles 2006, pp.12–15, 19; Wilton 2006, pp.90–1, 231.
13
Finberg 1961, pp.182, 183.
14
Finberg 1961, p.182.
15
Finberg 1961, p.182.
16
Kathryn Cave (ed.), The Diary of Joseph Farington, vol.X, New Haven and London 1982, p.3720.
17
Finberg 1961, pp.182–3; Lindsay 1966, pp.115–16.
18
Finberg 1909, I, p.392.
19
See particularly: W[illiam] G[eorge] Rawlinson, The Engraved Work of J.M.W. Turner, R.A., vol.I, London 1908, pp.xc–xci, 44–68 nos.88–127; Alexander J. Finberg, An Introduction to Turner’s Southern Coast, with a Catalogue of the Engravings in Which All the Known Working-Proofs Are Arranged and Described for the First Time, and a Full Transcript Is Made of Turner’s Marginal Notes and Instructions to the Engravers, London 1929; Eric Shanes, Turner’s Rivers, Harbours and Coasts, London 1981, pp.6–8; Wilton 1979, pp.350–5 nos.444–489; Eric Shanes, Turner’s England 1810–38, London 1990, pp.8–10; Luke Herrmann, ‘Southern Coast of England, Picturesque Views of [sic] the’ in Evelyn Joll, Martin Butlin and Luke Herrmann (eds.), The Oxford Companion to J.M.W. Turner, Oxford 2001, p.307.
20
Wilton 1979, pp.350–1 no.446, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 48 no.89.
21
Wilton 1979, p.351 no.450; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 50 no.93.
22
Wilton 1979, p.351 no.449, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 49–50 no.92
23
Wilton 1979, p.353 no.467, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 58 no.110.
24
Wilton 1979, p.351 no.448, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 49 no.91.
25
Wilton 1979, p.352 no.459, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 55 no.102.
26
Wilton 1979, p.353 no.465, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 57–8 no.108.
27
Wilton 1979, p.351 no.451, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 50–1 no.94.
28
Wilton 1979, p.355 no.488, reproduced.
29
Wilton 1979, p.351 no.452, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 51–2 no.95.
30
Wilton 1979, p.353 no.468, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 59 no.111.
31
Wilton 1979, p.385 no.737, reproduced.
32
Wilton 1979, p.351 no.453; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 52 no.96.
33
Wilton 1979, p.351 no.454, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 52–3 no.97.
34
Wilton 1979, p.352 no.457, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 54 no.100.
35
Wilton 1979, p.352 no.456, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 53–4 no.99 (see also pp.xc, 54 no.99a).
36
Wilton 1979, p.355 no.482; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 67 no.125.
37
Wilton 1979, p.355 no.487.
38
Eric Shanes, ‘Picture note 3: Babbacombe Bay from near Teignmouth’, Turner Studies, vol.10. no.1, Summer 1990, p.60, reproduced.
39
Wilton 1979, p352. no.461, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 55–6 no.104.
40
Wilton 1979, p.353 no.466; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 58 no.109.
41
Wilton 1979, pp.351–2 no.455, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 53 no.98.
42
Wilton 1979, p.352 no.458, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 54–5 no.101.
43
Wilton 1979, p.354 no.473, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 62 no.116.
44
Wilton 1979, p.350 no.445, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 47 no.88.
45
Wilton 1979, p.351 no.447; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 48–9 no.90.
46
Wilton 1979, pp.352–3 no.463, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 57 no.106.
47
Wilton 1979, p.354 no.478, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 65 no.121.
48
Wilton 1979, p.354 no.472, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 61 no.115.
49
Wilton 1979, p.352 no.462, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 56 no.105.
50
Wilton 1979, p.354 no.476, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 64 no.119.
51
Wilton 1979, p.353 no.469, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 59 no.112.
52
Wilton 1979, p.353 no.464; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 57 no. 107.
53
Wilton 1979, p.352 no.460; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xc, 55 no.103.
54
Wilton 1979, p.353 no.470, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 60–1 no.113.
55
Wilton 1979, pp.353–4 no.471, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 61 no.114.
56
Wilton 1979, p.354 no.474; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 62–3 no.117.
57
Wilton 1979, p.354 no.475, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 63–4 no.118.
58
Wilton 1979, p.354 no.477, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 64–5 no.120.
59
Wilton 1979, p.354 no.479; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 65–6 no.122.
60
Wilton 1979, p.355 no.480, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 66 no.123.
61
Wilton 1979, p.355 no.481; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 66 no.124.
62
Wilton 1979, p.355 no.483, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 67–8 no.126.
63
Wilton 1979, p.355 no.484, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 68 no.127.
64
Wilton 1979, p.355 no.485, reproduced.
65
Wilton 1979, p.355 no.486.
66
Wilton 1979, p.355 no.489, reproduced.
67
Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 74–6 nos.137–140.
68
Wilton 1979, p.350 no.440; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 74–5 no.137.
69
Wilton 1979, p.350 no.441; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 75 no.138.
70
Wilton 1979, p.350 no.442, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 75–6 no.139.
71
Wilton 1979, p.350 no.443, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xci, 76 no.140.
72
Eric Shanes, Turner’s England 1810–38, London 1990, p.39.
73
Wilton 1979, p.350; Shanes 1990, p.40.
74
Wilton 1979, p.350 no.444, reproduced; Rawlinson, I, p.cxv, II, p.415 no.851, as ‘The Banks of the Tavy’.
75
Rawlinson I 1908, p.cix, II 1913 pp.371–3, nos.770–772.
76
Wilton 1979, p.357 no.506; Rawlinson I 1908, p.cix, II 1913, p.372 no.771, p.373 no.773 (small replica).
77
Shanes 1990, p.127.
78
Not in Wilton 1979; Shanes 1990 p.127 no.99, reproduced.
79
Rawlinson I 1908, p.cix, II 1913, pp.363–71 nos.752–769.
80
Wilton 1979, p.385 no.737, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, p.cix, II 1913 p.367 no.757.
81
Wilton 1979, p.385 no.738, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, p.cix, II 1913 p.367 no.758.
82
Wilton 1979, p.385 no.739, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, p.cix, II 1913 p.368 no.759.
83
Wilton 1979, p.386 no.747, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, p.cix, II 1913 pp.370–1 no.767.
84
Rawlinson I 1908, p.cx, II 1913 pp.375–80 nos.778–790.
85
Wilton 1979, p.388 no.759, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, p.cx, II 1913, p.379 no.787.
86
Wilton 1979, p.388 no.760, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, p.cx, II 1913, p.380 no.788.
87
Wilton 1979, p.388 no.761, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, p.cx, II 1913, p.380 no.789.
88
Wilton 1979, p.388 no.762, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, p.cx, II 1913, p.380 no.790.
89
Rawlinson I 1908, pp.cx–cxi, II 1913, 385–91 nos.799–809a.
90
Wilton 1979, pp.389–90 no.773, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, p.cx, II 1913, 388 no.804.
91
Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xciv–xcvi, 117–69 nos.209–304.
92
Wilton 1979, p.391 no.787, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xciv, 119–20 no.211.
93
Wilton 1979, p.392 no.792, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xciv, 123 no.216.
94
Wilton 1979, p.392 no.794, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xciv, 124 no.218.
95
Wilton 1979, p.393 no.800, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xciv, 127 no.224; see also Rawlinson I 1908, p.xcvi, II 1913, p.220 no.316 (‘small replica’ in The Literary Souvenir, 1827).
96
Wilton 1979, p.393 no.801, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xciv, 127–8 no.225.
97
Wilton 1979, p.393 no.802, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xciv, 128 no.226.
98
Wilton 1979, p.394 no.807, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xciv, 130–1 no.231.
99
Wilton 1979, pp.394–5 no.811, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xciv, 133–4 no.235.
100
Wilton 1979, p.395 no.813, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xciv, 134–5 no.237.
101
Wilton 1979, p.396 no.822; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xciv, 139 no.246.
102
Wilton 1979, p.396 no.823; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xciv, 139–40 no.247.
103
Wilton 1979, p.397 no.835, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xcv, 145–6 no.259.
104
Wilton 1979, p.401 no.864, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xcv, 161–2 no.288.
105
Wilton 1979, p.401 no.866, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xcv, 162–3 no.290.
106
Wilton 1979, p.403 no.880, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, pp.xcvi, 69 no.304.
107
Wilton 1979, p.432 no.1117, reproduced; Rawlinson I 1908, p.cii, II 1913, p.292 no.540.
108
Butlin and Joll 1984, pp.93–4 no.130, pl.123 (colour).
109
Ibid., p.195 no.343, pl.345.
110
Ibid., p.207 no.358, pl.361 (colour).

Matthew Imms
July 2011

How to cite

Matthew Imms, ‘Tour of the West Country 1811’, July 2011, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, December 2012, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/tour-of-the-west-country-r1136818, accessed 24 October 2014.