Joseph Mallord William Turner

Two Copies of Engravings after John ‘Warwick’ Smith from ‘Select Views in Italy’


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 155 x 99 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXII 19 a

Catalogue entry

This page is one of a series containing small pen-and-ink sketches of topographical Italian views. As Finberg first identified, these are copies of the engraved plates in John Smith, William Byrne and John Emes’s, Select Views in Italy, published in two volumes between 1792–9. The image and notes on this page derive from the following compositions (in sequence left to right):
Villa of Horace, drawn by John ‘Warwick’ Smith and engraved by John Emes.1 Inscribed by the artist in black ink ‘Villa Horace’ bottom centre. This is the last image in Vol.1 and probably explains why Turner isolated it here instead of incorporating it within the next sheet of studies.
In the top right hand corner Turner has left a blank space inscribed by the artist in black ink ‘Village near Castelo Nuovo [?wants], 15 miles from Como no.22’. This refers to Plate 22, Village near Castello Nuovo, drawn by John ‘Warwick’ Smith and engraved by William Byrne and Benjamin Thomas Pouncy for which there is no corresponding copy by Turner, perhaps because the engraving was missing from the volume he consulted.2 Furthermore, mention of the plate is out of sequence with the rest of the studies, see folio 18 (D13964).
For a general discussion of Turner’s sketches from Select Views see the introduction to the sketchbook.

Nicola Moorby
July 2008

John Smith, William Byrne and John Emes, Select Views in Italy with Topographical and Historical Descriptions in English and French, vol.I, London 1792, pl.36.
Ibid., pl.22.

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