The view is north along the Rio del Palazzo, from beneath the arch of the Ponte della Paglia at the canal’s Bacino entrance. The Palazzo Ducale (Doge’s Palace) on the left and the New Prisons on the right are linked by the elevated Bridge of Sighs.1 Compare the evocative contemporary colour study on brown paper showing the scene by night (Tate D32253; Turner Bequest CCCXIX 5).
The contemporary Rotterdam to Venice sketchbook includes a view from a little closer to the Bridge of Sighs (Tate D32412–D32413; Turner Bequest CCCXX 76a–77). Folio 18 recto opposite here (D31310) shows the view back this way from the north; see also folios 15 verso, 16 recto and 57 recto (D31306–D31307, D31388).
As noted in the sketchbook’s Introduction, the Venice views on its early pages are intermingled with German sketches from Turner’s return journey.
See Finberg 1930, p.