Joseph Mallord William Turner

Nelson’s Monument


Not on display

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 99 × 159 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXV 60 a

Catalogue entry

In this view of Nelson’s Monument on Calton Hill, Turner is standing just to the north-west of the tower so that he can see it and Arthur’s Seat behind. The main architectural features of the monument are shown including the tower’s division into stacked sections, designed to recall Nelson’s telescope, and the castellated building at its base (see folio 61; D13429; CLXV 59, for more information). Arthur’s Seat, though drawn only in outline, is distinctive enough from this angle to contain all the information that Turner needed for this sketch.
Below the hill is a path that leads Calton Hill, onto which Turner has inscribed ‘walk’, and, to the right of that is seen part of Calton Gaol, where St Andrew’s House now stands. Turner made several drawing of the Calton Hill in this sketchbook including a detailed close up of Nelson’s Monument (folio 61).

Thomas Ardill
November 2007

Read full Catalogue entry

You might like

In the shop