Joseph Mallord William Turner

Inscription by Turner: A Draft of Poetry on Pope’s Villa


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 87 × 117 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CXIV 77

Catalogue entry

The whole page is taken up with poetry:
To thee whose Villa once this shore along
When [‘And’ inserted above] Thames rolld glittering upon Alex song
Makes chequered shades the Memry loves to meet
And Time and reput[...] loved to greet
Thy dissolving waters [?leads] a distant skies
Sad [?Monument] of worth to wondring eyes
And cold rancour by rich impulsive dyes
[?Sinks].. but men of tragic shores
Rest here in peace from thy [?dreer lives]
Till Nature shall even in the course
and bear the marks of pity not of force
To Art and music stand here thy
And tell to all to ask
    that Pope did [?assuage]1
This is a variation on the draft concerning the 1807 demolition of Alexander Pope’s villa on folio 4 recto (D07964), under which the subject is discussed.

Matthew Imms
January 2012

See Wilton and Turner 1990, p.169 (transcription, followed here with slight variations).

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