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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Colchester Castle c.1824

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 16 Recto:
Colchester Castle c.1824
Turner Bequest CCIX 16
Pencil on white wove paper, 115 x 118 mm
Watermarked ‘al[lee] | 18[19]’
Inscribed in red ink by John Ruskin ‘16’ bottom right
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
This study shows the Castle at Colchester in Essex, with its imposing Norman keep at centre. Constructed in 1076, the castle was reinforced by William I who wished to profit from the city’s strategic location between the North Sea coast and London.1 William’s builders plundered the ancient Roman edifices of Colchester for masonry and incorporated the existing foundations of the Temple of Claudius into the castle.2 See also Tate D18169; Turner Bequest CCIX 6a and the finished watercolour of Colchester in the collection of the Courtauld Institute Gallery, London (see Tate impressions T04511–T04512).3
Turner has rendered this study with the sketchbook turned upside down.

Alice Rylance-Watson
January 2015

‘History’, Colchester and Ipswich Museums, accessed 6 January 2015, http://www.cimuseums.org.uk/article/10838/History
Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, p.392 no.789.

How to cite

Alice Rylance-Watson, ‘Colchester Castle c.1824 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, January 2015, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, August 2016, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-colchester-castle-r1181068, accessed 21 October 2021.