Joseph Mallord William Turner

Rosyth Castle and Linlithgow Palace

1818

Not on display

Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 90 × 112 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D13510
Turner Bequest CLXVI 31 a

Catalogue entry

Drawn across two pages (continued on folio 32; D13511) are two panoramas of nearby castles: Rosyth Castle and Linlithgow Palace. Rosyth is seen from a distance sitting on a promontory of the northern bank of the Firth of Forth, which can be seen to the right of the structure, with the south bank behind it. There are several inscriptions on the hillside to the right of the castle (folio 32): ‘gr’, which is perhaps ‘grey’ or ‘green’, ‘sand’, referring to an area of beach on the north bank, and an inscription describing the castle which reads something like ‘Castle Brown in the P[...]’. A note, probably not in his own hand, in David Wallace-Hadrill’s unpublished notes mentions ‘Blackness’ castle as well as Rosyth and Linlithgow,1 and it may be this that is depicted in the distance on the far bank of the river.
The sketch below Rosyth shows Linlithgow Palace (several sketches of which follow in the sketchbook) from the east, with Linlithgow Church on its left, and the loch on its right. The sketch is quite slight, but as one of many studies of the subject it offered Turner a choice of viewpoint and composition.

Thomas Ardill
December 2007

1
David Wallace-Hadrill, unpublished notes, [circa 1989–94], Tate catalogue files.

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