Joseph Mallord William Turner

Naples from the Sea, with Castel dell’Ovo, Pizzofalcone and Castel Sant’Elmo


Not on display

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 113 × 189 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXXVI 13

Catalogue entry

The Castel dell’Ovo (Castle of the Egg) in Naples is an historic fortress built on the islet of Megaride, a small piece of headland which juts into the sea in front of the port of Santa Lucia. This sketch depicts a view of that islet taken from a boat just offshore to the immediate south.1 Beyond the bulky outline of the castle is the main coastline with the small steep hill of Pizzofalcone, rising to the greater heights of Castel Sant’Elmo beyond. The small dome visible near the waterfront to the left of the Castel dell’Ovo is the Church of Crocelle a Chiatamone. For further views of Naples from the sea see folios 3 verso–12 (D15913–D15919 and D15922–D15930).

Nicola Moorby
July 2010

Compare a painting by Gaspar Van Wittel (1652/3–1736), Naples from the sea, 1719 (Palazzo Pitti, Florence), reproduced in colour in Giuliano Briganti, Nicola Spinosa and Lindsay Stainton, In the Shadow of Vesuvius: Views of Naples from Baroque to Romanticism 1631–1830, exhibition catalogue, Accademia Italiana delle Arti e dell arti Applicate, London 1990, p.36.

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