The subject, an apparently ruined castle perched above a steep hill town with rugged peaks beyond, is unidentified, but may be Italian; see the Introduction to this section for further brief discussion and dating. The loose vertical marks in the foreground may be indications of the trunks of trees through which Turner observed the scene.
Paper conservator Peter Bower has noted this among numerous examples from Turner Bequest section CCCXLI of quarter sheets of paper with a watermark of letters ‘CS and laurel leaves’, paired with a separate mark of three numbers; they may come from one of the Brescia paper mill in Lombardy, from which there are comparable datable sheets from the 1830s and early 1840s.1
See Bower 1999, p.133 and note 1.
Blank; inscribed by John Ruskin in red ink ‘446’ bottom left and in pencil 145 | O’ bottom right