These cursory and swiftly executed views may depict Ghent, with boats plying the rivers Sheldt or Leie. The buildings recorded appear to be the same as those drawn on Tate D19854; Turner Bequest CCXVI 150b, a sketch which Turner himself annotated as ‘Ghent’. If this identification is correct, the buildings shown here would be St Nicholas’s Church, the Belfry, and St Bavo Cathedral. See Tate D19243, D19250, D29614, D29616–D29617; Turner Bequest CCXIV 203, 207, CCXCVI 9a, 10a–11, for other of Turner’s sketches of these Ghent landmarks.
This sheet, and its recto Tate D18473; Turner Bequest CCX 91, originally was catalogued and bound by Finberg in the Brighton and Arundel sketchbook of c.1824 (Turner Bequest CCX). The book was then reorganised and rebound at some point after 1909, and this leaf was placed in its current position into the present sketchbook (see the Technical notes section in the sketchbook Introduction).