Not on display

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 107 × 156 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLIII 6

Catalogue entry

The page contains a sketch, drawn horizontally, of a street-scene in the town of Harfleur. Finberg identified this sketch as being of ‘Harfleur’1and the location has been confirmed2 (for further information on Harfleur, see under folio 1 recto, D23699). A bridge spans the River Lézarde at the centre, above which rises a church tower, recognisable from its shape and the decorative details conveyed as that of the Church of Saint-Martin (for further information on the church, see under folio 2 verso; D23702). Turner’s viewpoint is directly above the river.
Houses, some half-timbered, such as the one to the right of the church, surround the church and bridge on either side. Turner concentrates on details of the church tower, and the upper parts of the buildings, the shapes of their roofs, the skyline they form, but also on the arch of the bridge below which draws the eye into the scene. Art historian Ian Warrell notes3 that Turner used this preliminary sketch for his later watercolour The Church of Saint-Martin at Harfleur, Normandy, c.1832 (Tate D24651; Turner Bequest CCLIX 86).
Finberg 1909, II, p.768.
Guillaud and others 1981, fig.663, p.326; ?Ian Warrell, ‘Turner on the Seine: Topographical Index’, c.1999, Prints and Drawings Room, Tate Britain (printout in copy of Warrell 1999), p.3.
Warrell 1999, p.270 no.78.
Technical notes:
The page is creased at the bottom right corner.

Caroline South
May 2017

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