Joseph Mallord William Turner

A Castle among Mountains, with Light on a Distant Peak

c.1799–1802

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Ink and graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 135 × 210 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D03997
Turner Bequest LXIX 4

Catalogue entry

The topography in this view, drawn with the page turned horizontally, does not correspond obviously to any known Welsh castle, though it incorporates elements from several. Its isolation on a high rock is reminiscent of Carreg Cennen in South Wales, its proximity to what appear to be high mountains suggests Snowdonia, and the castle on a high cliff above what may be the sea is like Harlech; compare folio 2 recto (D03995). For similar reasons Finberg suggested Dolbadarn,1 though the mass of the building bears no resemblance to that single tower. Other castles that Turner considered in this book include Pembroke (folio 1 recto; D03994) and Dunstanburgh in Northumberland (folio 5 recto; D03998).
1
Finberg 1909, I, p.170.
Verso:
Blank; slight offset from folio 5 recto opposite (D03998).

Andrew Wilton
May 2013

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