Joseph Mallord William Turner

The London Bridge Foundation Stone Ceremony: The Marquee beside Old London Bridge, with St Paul’s Cathedral Beyond; Studies of Flags


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Watercolour on paper
Support: 113 x 187 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCXIII 81 a

Catalogue entry

Inverted relative to the sketchbook’s foliation, the main drawing shows the marquee erected over the coffer-dam around the site of the southernmost pier of the new London Bridge, for the foundation stone ceremony held on the riverbed on 15 June 1825. Up-river to the north-west is the dome of St Paul’s Cathedral beyond Southwark Bridge. Compare the views on folio 82 recto opposite (D18824).
Above are notes and small sketches relating to the flags flying from the roof of the marquee, and there are more colour notes at the bottom right. The ceremony and other studies relating to it at the beginning and end of this sketchbook are discussed in the Introduction.

Matthew Imms
December 2014

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