Joseph Mallord William Turner

Liège from the South with St Laurent Barracks on the Horizon


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 99 × 162 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCXVII 1

Catalogue entry

Here Turner sketches the Belgian city of Liège from the water’s edge, on the banks of the Meuse. Small wooden rowing boats and river barges are docked in the sand at foreground and beyond is the crescent arc of a parade of buildings overlooking the river. In the distance, towards right, is the barracks of Saint-Laurent, situated atop the Publémont hill to the west of the city. Formerly a Benedictine abbey established in the early eleventh century, the monastery was converted into a military barracks during the Liège Revolution of 1789–91.1
For other views of the city taken in 1824 see Tate D19598, D19636–D19638, D20061–D20064, D20095–D20103; Turner Bequest CCXVI 24, 43a–44a, 260a–262, CCXVII 8–12). See also the Holland, Meuse and Cologne sketchbook of 1825 (Tate D19446–D19447, D19520–D19521; Turner Bequest CCXV 25a–26, 71a–72); and the Holland sketchbook of the same date (Tate D19160; Turner Bequest CCXIV 162). There are also drawings of Liège in the 1833 Brussels up to Mannheim-Rhine sketchbook (Tate D29669–D29670, D29673; Turner Bequest CCXCVI 37a–38, 39a). For pencil and colour studies produced in 1839 see Tate D24664, D20283, D28068, D28070–D28074, D28076; Turner Bequest CCLIX 99, CCXXII X, CCLXXXVII 14, 15–17, 18

Alice Rylance-Watson
January 2014

‘L’abbaye de Saint-Laurent’, Liège: le quartier Saint-Laurent, accessed 6 January 2014,

Read full Catalogue entry

You might like