Joseph Mallord William Turner

Prague: The Castle and Cathedral with an Extensive View up the Vltava; Prague: The Castle and Cathedral from the North-East with the Belvedere in the Castle Garden on the Right


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 100 × 159 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCCI 28

Catalogue entry

At rear Turner has rendered a view of Prague, with the Castle and St Vitus Cathedral at right and Vltava River with Charles Bridge at centre. This sketch extends onto the folio opposite (Tate D30349; Turner Bequest CCCI 27a).
Prague Castle and Cathedral are recorded again in the sketch above. The Castle was for centuries the seat of the Kings of Bohemia and Holy Roman Emperors and St Vitus the imperial place of worship. At right is the renaissance-styed Belvedere or Summer Palace, constructed in the mid sixteenth century for courtly entertainments and parties. Its elegant arcade, which is suggested in Turner’s sketch, was designed and lavishly decorated in relief by Italian stonemasons.1
Other drawings of Prague can be found at Tate D30344–D30361, D30364–D30366; Turner Bequest CCCI 25–33a, 36–37. The Prague, Nuremberg, Frankfurt and Rhine sketchbook of the same tour holds drawings of the city at Tate D30759–30761, D30764–D30765, D30767, D30771–D30773, D30775–D30777, D30779–D30783, D30788–D30790, D30792–D30803, D30805, D30807–D30811, D30813–D30820; Turner Bequest CCCIV 68–69, 70a–71, 72, 74–75, 76–77, 78–80, 82a–84, 85–91, 92, 93–96, 97–102.

Alice Rylance-Watson
September 2015

‘Royal Summer Palace’, Prague Castle, accessed 21 September 2015,

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