Joseph Mallord William Turner

Neuville-sur-Saône from a Boat on the River Saône


Not on display

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 114 × 185 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXIII 43

Catalogue entry

Turner travelled between Chalon-sur-Saône and Lyon by boat, probably in a sailing vessel known as a coche d’eau, or water diligence, see folio 38 (D14051). According to contemporary guidebooks the road diligence (a large public carriage) from Paris connected at Chalon with a daily service and this made a pleasanter journey to Lyon than by land.1 This sketch has been drawn from on board the deck of the boat with a group of fellow passengers assembled near the prow. The town visible in the background is identifiable as Neuville-sur-Saône which lies on the left bank of the River Saône approximately nine miles north of Lyon. The most easily recognisable landmark is the Church of Notre-Dame-de-l’Assomption which has two seventeenth-century bell towers and can be seen on the right-hand side of the composition.

Nicola Moorby
March 2013

See for example, Heinrich August O. Reichard, A Descriptive Road Book of France, London 1829, pp.101–2, and Mariana Starke, Travels on the Continent between the Years 1824 and 1828 Written for the Use and Particular Information of Travellers, London 1828, p.458.

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