Joseph Mallord William Turner

The Rocca of Ravaldino (or Caterina Sforza) at Forlì and Towers in the City Beyond


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 111 × 184 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXVI 40 a

Catalogue entry

As recognised by Cecilia Powell,1 the view, obscured by later developments, is north from what is now Viale Giovanni dalle Bande Nere beyond Forlì’s impressive medieval Rocca of Ravaldino (or Caterina Sforza), with the spire of the campanile of the Cathedral of Santa Croce towards the left, and the more prominent campanile of the Abbey of San Mercuriale to its right in the distance. There are other confirmed, likely or possible Forlì views on folio 45 recto opposite, and folios 48 recto and verso and 49 recto (D14570, D14576–D14578; Turner Bequest CLXXVI 41, 44, 44a, 45), the last of which is another showing the fortress, as may a slight drawing inside the back cover (D40897).
Powell has commented on the relatively uneventful phase of Turner’s journey between leaving Bologna and reaching Rimini (folios 43 recto–60 verso; D14566–D14598; Turner Bequest CLXXVI 39a–56a);2 for his overall route south-east between Bologna and Ancona, see the sketchbook’s Introduction.

Matthew Imms
March 2017

See Powell 1984, p.406.
Ibid., pp.89–90, 465 note 98.

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