Joseph Mallord William Turner

Eight Sketches from the Road Between Salerno and Cava de’ Tirreni, Including Views of the Bay of Salerno, Vietri sul Mare and Molina


Not on display

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 189 × 113 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXXVI 39

Catalogue entry

The sketches on this page represent a sequence of views seen from the road which leads from Salerno to Cava de’ Tirreni, and ultimately to Naples (present-day Via Madonna degli Angeli and Via Roma). Turner has made successive thumbnail studies whilst travelling along this road including the vista looking east across the town and bay of Salerno towards the distant Plain of Paestum (top right and centre). The tower visible on the far right-hand side of the central sketch (inscribed ‘Bay of Salerno’), is the Torre Crestarella, one of a number of medieval watch-towers built along the Amalfi coast to defend against Saracen invasion. Meanwhile, the two views on the second row from the bottom depict the adjacent town of Vietri sul Mare with the dome and campanile of the seventeenth-century Church of San Giovanni Battista. Finally the subject of the scene at the bottom is Molina, a small town in the valley north of Vietri sul Mare so called because of its water mills (mulino). Turner has pictured the old aqueduct, the so-called Ponte del Diavolo, which used to be the town’s dominant landmark until it was destroyed by a flood in 1954.
For further sketches from this road see folios 41 verso–44 (D15989–D15994; Turner Bequest CLXXXVI 39a–44).

Nicola Moorby
July 2010

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