Joseph Mallord William Turner

Study for ‘The Battle of Trafalgar, as Seen from the Mizen Starboard Shrouds of the Victory’, and Other Studies

1805

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 114 × 184 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D05472
Turner Bequest LXXXIX 21

Catalogue entry

Drawn with the sketchbook inverted, this is a continuation of the rough sketch on folio 27 verso (D05471; Turner Bequest LXXXIX 20a) for which see catalogue entry. It extends the composition to the left to include a smaller ship and the huge hull and lofty stern cabins of the Spanish flagship Santissima Trinidad, whose famous four tiers of guns are indicated (see also folio 21 verso, D05458; Turner Bequest LXXXIX 12). In Turner’s picture, The Battle of Trafalgar, as Seen from the Mizen Starboard Shrouds of the Victory, exhibited at Turner’s Gallery in 1806 (Tate N00480;1 see the Introduction to this sketchbook), the Union Jack belonging to a British ship otherwise largely obscured by smoke is visible to right of the Santissima Trinidad’s stern. It flies near the Spaniard’s mizzen gaff, not her jib boom (which would be attached to the bowsprit).

David Blayney Brown
March 2006

1
Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, revised ed., New Haven and London 1984, p.46 no.58 (pl.68).

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