Joseph Mallord William Turner

St-Jacques du Tréport from the Harbour


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite, watercolour and pen on paper
Support: 230 × 328 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCCLIX 17

Display caption

These five watercolours of the port of Le Treport and the nearby town of Eu in Normandy record Turner's last journey to the Continent in 1845. During this visit Turner was invited to dine at the chateau of Eu by the French king, Louis-Philippe, whom he had known many years earlier. Ruskin's descriptions of these works concentrate on the technical achievement by which they were brought about. For example, he notes that the cliff in no.1 'is a masterpiece of drawing; it is not possible with the given number of touches to indicate more faithfully the form of a chalk precipice, or the way it breaks into the turf at its brow.'

Gallery label, September 2004

Does this text contain inaccurate information or language that you feel we should improve or change? We would like to hear from you.

Catalogue entry

Robert Upstone identifies this sketch as a view from the harbour at Le Tréport towards the Church of St-Jacques.1 The structure is silhouetted in grey against a light-blue sky and contrasts with the dazzling white of the chalk cliffs which has been created with an area of ‘reserved’ blank paper.2
Upstone 1993, p.57.
For a contemporary description of St-Jacques du Tréport, see Jean Benoi^t De´sire´ Cochet, Les Églises de l’Arrondissement de Dieppe, Dieppe 1846, pp.182–191.
Technical notes:
The slightly shaved-off ‘CCCLIX–17’ stamped in black ink at the bottom right of the sketch suggests that the sheet has been trimmed.
Blank; except for patches of watercolour and various endorsement marks. Towards the bottom centre ‘ccclix. 17’ and a semi-inverted ‘67’ have been inscribed in pencil. The Turner Bequest monogram has been stamped in black ink above ‘CCCLIX – 17’ to the bottom left of the sheet.

John Chu
February 2014

Read full Catalogue entry


You might like