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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner View of St Peter's and the Vatican from the North-West 1819

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 7 Recto:
View of St Peter’s and the Vatican from the North-West 1819
D16169
Turner Bequest CLXXXVIII 7
Pencil on white wove paper, 114 x 189 mm
Inscribed by the artist in pencil ‘as long as the V’ within sketch of wall
Stamped in black ‘CLXXXVIII 7’ bottom right
 
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner’s viewpoint for this sketch of St Peter’s and the Vatican may have been the Pineta Sacchetti, a wood of pine trees which lies to the north-west of the Vatican, at the foot of Monte Mario. The machicolated tower seen to the right of Michelangelo’s famous dome is part of the ancient medieval walls at the western end of the Vatican and is today occupied by Vatican radio. Turner’s inscribed note, ‘as long as the V’ possibly means that the ramparts run the length of the Vatican complex.
The drawing continues on the opposite sheet of the double-page spread, see folio 6 verso (D16168). Another sketch from a similar viewpoint can be found on folio 7 verso (D16170).

Nicola Moorby
September 2008

How to cite

Nicola Moorby, ‘View of St Peter’s and the Vatican from the North-West 1819 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, September 2008, 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-view-of-st-peters-and-the-vatican-from-the-north-west-r1139678, accessed 28 May 2024.