Joseph Mallord William Turner

Vesuvius, Seen from the Ruins of Pompeii with the Forum


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 113 × 189 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXXV 23 a

Catalogue entry

This distant view of Vesuvius rising above the ruins of Pompeii was drawn from a location on the Via delle Scuole near the southern perimeter of the city walls, looking north towards the recently excavated Forum. Turner’s sketch suggests that the area in the left-hand foreground was as yet uncovered but visible in the central middle distance is the Temple of Jupiter, flanked on either side by the Arch of Augustus (left) and the so-called Arch of Tiberius (right). In the top right-hand corner of the page is a separate study of the volcano with its smoking crater. For further views of the Forum see folio 21 (D15776). For other sketches and a general discussion of Turner’s visit to Pompeii see the introduction to the sketchbook.

Nicola Moorby
September 2010

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