Joseph Mallord William Turner

Coastal Views, Possibly at or near Margate


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 171 × 150 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCCXLIV 134

Catalogue entry

There are half a dozen or so studies here, some of which are slight, overlapping and difficult to distinguish. The clearest one is isolated in the top third, showing figures in a small boat, perhaps fishermen in the bay at Margate with the outline of the town to the east; compare for example the prospect in the watercolour Margate, Kent of about 1830 (Herbert Art Gallery and Museum, Coventry),1 engraved for the Picturesque Views in England and Wales in 1832 (Tate impressions: T04590–T04592, T06098). The word at the top right appears to be ‘wicker’, suggesting fishermen deploying or retrieving a basketwork lobster pot.
There may be at least one more profile of Margate in the jumbled drawings at the centre, where the notes include ‘White H[...]’ and ‘[?White] Mill’. Below is a windmill, perhaps on the coast nearby, and lastly a study of a boat with a ‘White sail’.
See under Tate D34337 (Turner Bequest CCCXLIII 36a) for closely related works in this Margate subsection and elsewhere.
Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, p.398 no.839, reproduced.
Technical notes:
The partial watermark ‘mlett’ on the similar sheet Tate D34493 mentioned below likely indicates the Devon papermaker Edward Norish Tremlett, operating at various mills around Exeter between 1831 and 1856, in partnership with Dewdney between 1831 and 1833, and Charles Harris between 1833 and 1851.1
This and Tate D34493 and D34494 (Turner Bequest CCCXLIV 132, 133) are on tall, narrow halves of folded sheets similar to several other once-folded bifolio sheets in this subsection and elsewhere, as discussed under Tate D34337 (Turner Bequest CCCXLIII 36a). The horizontal dimension of the half actually drawn on is 77 mm.
See ‘Exeter Working Papers in British Book Trade History; 7: The Devon paper trades: a biographical dictionary: Exeter’, Exeter Working Papers in Book History, accessed 4 May 2016,

Matthew Imms
August 2016

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