For Turner’s visit to the St Gotthard Pass and Reuss Gorge in 1802 see Introduction to the sketchbook and notes to D04628; Turner Bequest LXXV 36. This dramatic and expressive study, richly coloured, was particularly admired by John Ruskin. In manuscript notes made in 1880 on Turner’s drawings of the St Gotthard, he described it as ‘the great one.’1 Ruskin recommended it for copying and there is a copy of it by Isabella Lee Jay (fl. 1882–1896) in the Ruskin Galleries, Bembridge, Isle of Wight. Although Ruskin did not own any of her works himself, he considered her copies after Turner ‘the most accurate and beautiful I have yet seen, in many respects attaining fully to the expression of the master’s most subtle qualities’2 and commissioned one by her after Thomas Matthews Rooke (1842–1942) for the Guild of St George, Sheffield.
Inscribed by a later hand in pencil ‘11’ within a circle