Joseph Mallord William Turner

Verses (Inscription by Turner)


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 115 × 76 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CII 11

Catalogue entry

For the longer draft poems to which Turner’s verses belong, see Introduction to the sketchbook, and notes to folio 10 verso, 11 verso and 12 (D06740, D06742, D06743) which have variants of these lines. They refer to James Thomson, poet of the Seasons (1730). Finberg did not transcribe the verses on this leaf and the reading given here was first made by Rosalind Mallord Turner for the 1990 Tate exhibition:
Bring a deck
Fair seasons guard your T.[homson] shrine
With watery may
[?playing] fresh all day P.[?hoebus] shine
And wary way it round [w]reath intwine
Where Phoebus over your valies shine
Fill high the coral shell the[n] fill
In many age his lyre let thrill
Speak to the heart [?Pity] yet thrill

David Blayney Brown
March 2007

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