Joseph Mallord William Turner

Houses at Antony Passage beside Forder Lake, with Trematon Castle Beyond


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 95 × 157 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CXXXI 43

Catalogue entry

The sketches between folio 36 recto (D09255) and here were made in the vicinity of Trematon Castle, above the St Germans or Lynher River west of the River Tamar and Plymouth. The subjects as far as folio 127 recto (D09358) are all identified or presumed sites within a few miles in and around Plymouth, suggesting a series of fairly short excursions. As noted in this sketchbook’s Introduction, local resident Mr Charles Nodder has used his knowledge of the area around Trematon Castle to write a privately circulated article discussing the relevant drawings in this sketchbook, after inspecting and discussing them with the present author,1 who is very grateful for his comments: he identifies these buildings, drawn with the page turned horizontally, as Heron Cottage on the left, and Mill Cottage (with the narrow gable end) in front of the tidal mill on Forder Lake in the middle distance.2 A later cottage now stands opposite Heron Cottage, while a prominent Great Western Railway bridge crosses Forder Lake beyond the mill.
Eric Shanes has noted that this sketch is the source for the watercolour Trematon Castle, Cornwall of about 1828 (currently untraced),3 engraved in 1830 for the series Picturesque Views in England and Wales (Tate impressions: T04563, T04564).4 The serene finished composition is actually somewhat confused, in that it appears to conflate and adapt sketches made in opposite directions, with the left-hand side based on the present work, looking north up Forder Lake to the castle, and the right taken from folio 42 recto (D09262), looking south down the lake from near the castle.5

Matthew Imms
April 2014

Conversation, 27 October 2010.
Charles Nodder, ‘JMW Turner’s Views around Antony Passage’, unpublished article, 2010, Tate catalogue files, p.5.
Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, p.396 no.822.
Shanes 1979, p.156; see also Lyles 1992, p.51.
See also Nodder 2010, p.5.

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