Joseph Mallord William Turner

Prague: View across the Vltava from the Belvedere to the Old Town, with the Týn Church


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 25

Catalogue entry

This is a sketch of Prague taken from the Belvedere, a renaissance summer palace located within the gardens of Prague Castle. The Belvedere’s elevated viewpoint afforded Turner excellent prospects of the city and its multitude of church spires and towers. Dominating the Old Town at right is Týn Church, a gothic construction with eighty-metre high towers topped with narrowly tapering spires and turrets. Also visible is the Town Hall and the baroque Church of St Nicholas’, situated close to Týn on the Old Town Square.
Turner produced several sketches of Prague on the 1835 tour; other drawings in this sketchbook can be found at Tate D30345–D30361, D30364–D30366; Turner Bequest CCCI 25a–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

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