Joseph Mallord William Turner

Llyn Cwellyn


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 229 × 332 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest XXXVIII 97

Catalogue entry

The view is taken looking west along Llyn Cwellyn, with the mass of Mynydd Mawr on the left, behind the cliff of Craig cwm Buchan which drops into the lake on the far side. Another, more elaborate watercolour of this subject is in the Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester (D88.1892).1 It too is a study and the sheet is only very slightly larger than the pages of this book.
The two patrons who commissioned finished views based on this drawing (see the inscriptions on the verso) were Edward Lascelles of Harewood in Yorkshire who also commissioned a drawing based on folio 53 recto (D01289; Turner Bequest XXXVIII 37), and the miniature painter Alexander Pope (1763–1835), who commissioned several views from Turner; see folios 81 recto and 96 recto (Tate D01304, D01261; Turner Bequest XXXVIII 50a, 11a), and the South Wales sketchbook of 1795 (D00572; Turner Bequest XXVI 19).
For the present subject, see also folio 65 recto (D01330; Turner Bequest XXXVIII 76). A series of sketches of Cwellyn occurs in the North Wales sketchbook (Tate D01381–D01384; Turner Bequest XXXIX 26–29).
Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, p.329 no.267, reproduced.
Inscribed by Turner in pencil ‘Castle Keynhwm | Quathlyn Pool’, ‘Honble Mr Lacelles’, and ‘Pope | Jany 1799’; stamped in brown ink with Turner Bequest monogram
The three inscriptions all appear to be by Turner himself, but the handwriting is very different in each; all were presumably made at various times and under different conditions. That referring to ‘Pope’ was written with the page reversed, and is dated eighteen months after the tour. ‘Castle Keynhwm’ is probably the artist’s transliteration of Castell Cidwm, another name for Craig cwm Buchan, the cliff that rises from the lake beneath Mynydd Mawr.

Andrew Wilton
May 2013

Read full Catalogue entry


You might like

In the shop