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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Verses (Inscription by Turner) c.1808

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 11 Recto:
Verses (Inscription by Turner) circa 1808
Turner Bequest CII 11
Inscribed by Turner in pencil (see main catalogue entry) on white wove paper, 115 x 76 mm
Inscribed by John Ruskin in red ink ‘11’ bottom left, descending vertically
Stamped in black ‘CII 11’ bottom left, descending vertically
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
For the longer draft poems to which Turner’s verses belong, see Introduction to the sketchbook, and notes to folio 10 verso, 11 verso and 12 (D06740, D06742, D06743) which have variants of these lines. They refer to James Thomson, poet of the Seasons (1730). Finberg did not transcribe the verses on this leaf and the reading given here was first made by Rosalind Mallord Turner for the 1990 Tate exhibition:
Bring a deck
Fair seasons guard your T.[homson] shrine
With watery may
[?playing] fresh all day P.[?hoebus] shine
And wary way it round [w]reath intwine
Where Phoebus over your valies shine
Fill high the coral shell the[n] fill
In many age his lyre let thrill
Speak to the heart [?Pity] yet thrill

David Blayney Brown
March 2007

How to cite

David Blayney Brown, ‘Verses (Inscription by Turner) c.1808 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, March 2007, 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-verses-inscription-by-turner-r1130834, accessed 24 June 2024.