Joseph Mallord William Turner

Dunbar Castle from the Sea

1801

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 115 × 164 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D02703
Turner Bequest LIV 61 a

Catalogue entry

Inverted relative to the sketchbook’s foliation, this is one of a series of drawings of Dunbar continuing to folio 70 verso (D02720). The castle, built shortly after the Norman Conquest, was one of the most substantial fortifications in Scotland, resisting many attacks over the centuries. It was a refuge for Mary, Queen of Scots on two occasions, the second of which led to its demolition on the orders of the Scottish Parliament in 1568. Dunbar is the site of a famous battle between Cromwellian forces and loyalist Scottish Presbyterians, who were defeated here in 1650.

Andrew Wilton
May 2013

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