Joseph Mallord William Turner

Ponte alle Grazie and San Miniato al Monte, from the Uffizi, Florence


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
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 CXCI 83

Catalogue entry

Many of Turner’s sketches of Florence represent views from the banks of the River Arno. This study depicts the vista looking upstream (east) from the river end of the Uffizi gallery, the arches of which are visible on the far left-hand side of the composition. The central focus of the drawing is the Ponte alle Grazie, a historic crossing anciently known as the Ponte Rubaconte.1 As Turner’s sketch shows the bridge was formerly punctuated by buildings over the supporting piers, but these were removed during the late nineteenth century and the bridge itself was rebuilt after being destroyed during the Second World War. To the left of the Ponte alle Grazie is the tall, fortified tower of the Porta San Niccolò (present-day Torre San Niccolò), the easternmost gate of the medieval city walls, whilst rising above the city on the right is the hill topped by the Churches of San Salvatore al Monte and San Miniato al Monte.
Powell 1984, p.431.

Nicola Moorby
February 2011

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