Joseph Mallord William Turner

Half-length Study of the Fighting Gladiator


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Chalk on paper
Support: 337 × 269 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest V R

Catalogue entry

This is a very tentative and presumably early essay. The famous original from which the Royal Academy’s cast was taken had been in the Borghese collection, housed in the Villa Borghese in Rome, since its discovery at Nettuno (ancient Antium) in the early seventeenth century. The Belvedere Apollo (for which see chiefly Tate D00056–D00058; Turner Bequest V C–E) was also discovered at Antium. Other studies of the Gladiator, also known as the ‘Fighting Gladiator’, are Tate D00069, D00071 and D40219 (Turner Bequest V Q, V S, V P [verso]).
The verso of this sheet is D40220.
Technical notes:
The top right corner has been torn away.

Andrew Wilton
April 2012

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