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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Cliffs, with the North Foreland Lighthouse 1796

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 36 Verso:
Cliffs, with the North Foreland Lighthouse 1796
Turner Bequest XXX 35
Pencil on white wove paper, 108 x 126 mm
Turner scholar C.F. Bell identified this as the lighthouse at Kent’s North Foreland.1 It is an octagonal structure of the late seventeenth century, which had been raised by a storey just before Turner’s visit, in 1793. The upper section was removed in the late nineteenth century.
As now bound, the subject is inverted relative to the sketchbook’s foliation. Finberg’s numbering of this page as ‘XXX 35’ in the 1909 Inventory, without his customary ‘a’ suffix to indicate a verso, seems to imply that this slight drawing was then on the recto of the sheet, which would suggest that the book was later rebound with the page back to front, as is the case with several later leaves (see the Technical notes in the sketchbook’s Introduction). In all these cases the Turner Bequest monogram is stamped on the unused side.
The blank recto is stamped in brown ink with the Turner Bequest monogram, inscribed by John Ruskin in red ink ‘35’ and stamped in black ‘XXX 35’ at the bottom right.

Andrew Wilton
May 2011

MS note ‘North Foreland. CFB’ by A.J. Finberg in his annotated copy of Finberg 1909, I, p.61 (Prints and Drawings Room, Tate Britain).

How to cite

Andrew Wilton, ‘Cliffs, with the North Foreland Lighthouse 1796 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, May 2011, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, November 2014, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-cliffs-with-the-north-foreland-lighthouse-r1149720, accessed 18 September 2019.