In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 114 × 187 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLXVI 42 a

Catalogue entry

This view of Carlisle from the north-east, made with the sketchbook inverted and continuing slightly onto folio 43 (D25845), is a compositional preparation for the much more detailed drawing across folios 43 verso–44 (D25846–D25847). This drawing formed the basis of Turner’s frontispiece illustration for volume 1 of Scott’s Poetical Works: Carlisle circa 1832 (watercolour, Yale Center for British Art).1
The composition, with Eden Bridge directly beneath the castle and the cathedral to the left, emulates the design that Turner made around 1797 for the Copper Plate Magazine, Carlisle, which was engraved by Walker, published in 1797 (Tate T05902) and based on designs by other artists. In his final design for Scott, Turner shifted the position of the bridge to the right.
For further sketches of Carlisle in this book see folio 39 verso (D25838).

Thomas Ardill
September 2009

Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, p.427 no.1070.

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