Joseph Mallord William Turner

Castle Campbell, from Dollar


Not on display

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 184 × 119 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLXXII 12

Catalogue entry

Turner passed Castle Campbell at Dollar during a tour of Scotland in 1834 undertaken to collect views to illustrate the works of Sir Walter Scott; see Tour of Scotland for Scott’s Prose Work 1834 Tour Introduction. Although Scott had visited the castle in 1821 and 1828, he did not refer to it in any of his novels or prose.1 Where Scott travelled, however, romantic and picturesque tourists followed, and it is possible that the late author’s publisher Robert Cadell may have recommended the spot to Turner. David Wallace-Hadrill and Janet Carolan have also shown that Turner seems to have taken an interest in places associated with the life of Mary Queen of Scots.2 Mary stayed at Castle Campbell in 1563 for the wedding of the sister of the Earl of Argyll to James Stewart, Lord Doune,3 though Turner made no note of this on any of the sketches. In any case, he took the opportunity while passing through Dollar to explore in some detail the ruins and romantic setting of Castle Campbell.
The two sketches on the present page were made from the approach to the castle at Dollar, and record Turner’s progress to the castle. The first, drawn across the centre of the page with the book turned to the right, was made from West Burnside in Dollar, and shows the bridge over the Dollar Burn with the gabled end of a house, apparently called Greenfield.4 The castle is represented as a square on the hills at the upper left, with the Ochil Hills beyond to the north. A sketch in the Stirling and Edinburgh book shows a similar view (D26341; CCLXIX 44).
The sketch beneath brings us a little closer to the castle, with a view from the entrance to Mill Green at the start of the castle approach road. The castle is depicted at the centre of the sketch, and in the foreground at the left is the water wheel of the woollen mill that stood at the foot of Dollar Glen.5
At the top of the page are two sketches of distant hills, probably the Ochil Hills to the north. It is possible that the second sketch is a continuation of the view from the right of the top sketch.
Sir Walter Scott, The Journal of Sir Walter Scott from the Original Manuscript at Abbotsford, vo.II, New York 1890, p.207 28 June 1828.
Wallace-Hadrill and Carolan 1990, pp.15, 20–21.
David J. Breeze, A Queen’s Progress: An Introduction to the Buildings Associated with Mary Queen of Scots in the Care of the Secretary of State for Scotland, Edinburgh 1987, p.41.
Wallace-Hadrill and Carolan 1990, p.18.
Ibid.; ‘Dollar, Woolen Mill’, Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland, accessed 27 October 2010,

Thomas Ardill
October 2010

Finberg 1909, II, p.873, CCLXXII 12.

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