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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Verses (Inscription by Turner) c.1816

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 7 Verso:
Verses (Inscription by Turner) circa 1816
Turner Bequest CXL 7a
Pencil on white wove paper, 155 x 95 mm
Inscribed by Turner in pencil (see main catalogue entry)
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Not transcribed by Finberg, Turner’s verses can be partly read as follows:
To unoffending Carthage offered still
The peaceful olive but insidiously twined
Around its branches by the insidious asp
Down and when concession urged that sap
Strength [surrendering up her children and her arms inserted]
Unconscious of the guilt
& hate ...
The body mother in the feeling conflict
Straddling ...her only care
Offering to her breast...
See notes to folio 4 (D10416) for verse in this sketchbook related to The Decline of the Carthaginian Empire (Tate N00499)1 exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1817, and the historical background to the subject.

David Blayney Brown
July 2011

Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, revised ed. 1984, pp.100–1 no.135 (pl.137).

How to cite

David Blayney Brown, ‘Verses (Inscription by Turner) c.1816 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, July 2011, 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-r1131406, accessed 16 May 2022.