Joseph Mallord William Turner

?Lillebonne Castle, Normandy


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 187 × 114 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLII 4 a

Catalogue entry

With the sketchbook turned vertically, Turner recorded the horizon line of an architectural structure, apparently defensive in nature, at the top of this page. Both the Channel Islands and the Seine valley abound in such features, although the ruined medieval castle at Lillebonne shared the outlines of this structure in the early nineteenth century. For comparisons, see examples of the watercolours on this subject which Turner worked up with a view to engraved reproduction around this time: Tate D24675 (Turner Bequest CCLIX 110), D24676 (Turner Bequest CCCLIX 111), and D24807 (Turner Bequest CCLIX 242). These culminated in two engravings in the 1834 volume of Turner’s Annual Tour: Wanderings by the Loire and Seine (1833–5; later reissued as Rivers of France); see Tate impressions T05599 and T05600.
In the lower right-hand quadrant of the page, long sweeping pencil lines depict an undulating stretch of terrain with the sea or a plain beyond.
Technical notes:
The bottom of the page is marked with grey watercolour, carried over or transferred from folio 5 recto opposite (D23533; Turner Bequest CCLII 5).

John Chu
April 2014

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