J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner A Classical Harbour c.1822-3

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 25 Verso
A Classical Harbour c.1822–3
Turner Bequest CCII 25 a
Pencil on paper, 257 x 178 mm
Blind-stamped with Turner Bequest monogram centre towards bottom
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
With the sketchbook turned upside down relative to the foliation this drawing occupies the left side of the upper register. Shipping appears to flank either side of the composition as if docked at a harbour with the sun or moon centrally placed above them. The drawing is similar in layout to the Claudian-styled depiction of a harbour with vessels on folio 6 of this sketchbook (Tate D17725; Turner Bequest CCII 6). It is the format of the drawing, then, that probably led the Turner scholars Martin Butlin, Andrew Wilton and John Gage to believe it to be a sketch of a classical composition, probably a harbour embarkation scene.1

Alice Rylance-Watson
March 2013

Butlin, Wilton and Gage 1974, p.97, no.260

How to cite

Alice Rylance-Watson, ‘A Classical Harbour c.1822–3 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, March 2013, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, September 2014, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-a-classical-harbour-r1148315, accessed 28 May 2024.