Joseph Mallord William Turner

Windsor Castle across the River Thames from the Brocas Meadows


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 116 × 222 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCXXV 3

Catalogue entry

Turner’s viewpoint is the Brocas meadows on the north side of the River Thames, looking south-east across to Windsor Castle. There is a slight continuation to the right below the main view, showing the tower and prominent pinnacles of St John the Baptist’s Church, built only a few years before in 1820–2 to replace a sprawling medieval church on the same site.1 This sketch is the last of a sequence with folio 1 recto and folio 2 recto and verso (D20558–D20560). For later changes to the landscape, see under D20558, and for similar drawings in the Windsor and Cowes, Isle of Wight sketchbook (Tate; Turner Bequest CCXXVI), see the Introduction to the present book.
Eric Shanes has noted this drawing among those listed above in relation to the watercolour Windsor Castle of about 1828–9 (British Museum, London),2 engraved in 1831 for Turner’s Picturesque Views in England and Wales (Tate impressions: T05086, T06093); all show similar but not identical permutations of the castle, river and trees in the subsequent design.
See ‘Windsor Parish Church’, The Royal Windsor Website, accessed 5 March 2014,
Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, p.397 no.829, reproduced, as c.1829; Shanes 1979, p.34 no.40, as c.1827–9; Sloan 1998, p.98 no.30, reproduced in colour p.[99], as c.1828–9.
Technical notes:
As in most other cases in this sketchbook, John Ruskin’s customary red ink page number is not immediately apparent adjacent to the later stamp.

Matthew Imms
August 2014

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