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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Small Holy Family, after Giulio Romano 1802

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 17 Recto:
Small Holy Family, after Giulio Romano 1802
Turner Bequest LXXII 17
Pencil, with some scratching out, on white wove paper prepared with a grey wash, 128 x 114 mm
Inscribed by Turner in pencil ‘V.B.R. Mid | E. Lead B light | ... G’ at right of image
Inscribed by John Ruskin in red ink ‘17’ bottom right
Stamped in black ‘LXXII–17’ bottom right
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
This Holy Family, from the collection of Louis XIV, was long ascribed to Raphael (for Turner and Raphael in the Louvre, see catalogue note to folio 13 of this sketchbook, D04287). Today it is attributed to Giulio Romano (circa 1499–1546). The Virgin appears with St Anne and the Christ child with the infant St John the Baptist. The picture is illustrated alongside Turner’s drawing by Warrell,1 who proposes that Turner may have had it in mind when he painted his own Holy Family (Tate N00473)2 on returning to London; however, as Warrell also acknowledges, the influence there is mainly Venetian.
Turner’s shorthand notes in his sketchbook seem to refer partly to the landscape background on the right of the picture, which he omitted from his copy.
Warrell in Solkin 2009, p.45 reproduced fig.13, pp.134–5.
Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, revised ed., New Haven and London 1984, pp.38–9 no.49 (pl.60).

David Blayney Brown
October 2009

How to cite

David Blayney Brown, ‘Small Holy Family, after Giulio Romano 1802 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, October 2009, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, December 2012, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-small-holy-family-after-giulio-romano-r1129700, accessed 24 May 2024.