Joseph Mallord William Turner

Les Invalides, Paris


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 175 × 127 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLVII 157 a

Catalogue entry

With the sketchbook turned horizontally, Turner filled this page with detail studies of the monumental architecture of Paris. Distinctive is the drawing of the dome of the seventeenth-century military complex of Les Invalides worked into the left-hand side of the page. Turner made several sketches of this building in the present volume, a list of which is provided in the sketchbook Introduction. The existence these drawings and a watercolour study (Tate D24572; Turner Bequest CCLIX 7) suggests that Turner considered the subject as an illustration for Turner’s Annual Tour: Wanderings by the Loire and Seine (1833–5; later reissued as Rivers of France) or the new edition of Walter Scott’s Life of Napoleon Buonaparte (1834–36) although Les Invalides did not make it into either publication in the event.1

John Chu
January 2015

W[illiam] G[eorge] Rawlinson, The Engraved Work of J.M.W. Turner, R.A., London 1908, . vol.II, pp.264–76 nos.453–92, 288–92 nos.525–39.

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