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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Warships, including 'Redoutable' and 'Fougueux', and Flags 1805

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 14 Recto:
Warships, including ‘Redoutable’ and ‘Fougueux’, and Flags 1805
Turner Bequest LXXXIX 31
Pencil on white wove paper, 114 x 184 mm, reconstituted
Inscribed by Turner in pencil ‘Red’ and ‘Foueux’ by the central ship, and ‘BWR’ (twice) and ‘RWB’ within flags top right
Inscribed by John Ruskin in red ink ‘31’ bottom right, ‘976’ top right, inverted, and ‘Cut off the bit that completes the | Study of Trafalgar. There was nothing on the rest of this’ in right margin, running vertically
Inscribed by Arthur Mayger Hind in pencil ‘belongs to p.26’ bottom right
Stamped in black ‘LXXXIX 31’ bottom right, and ‘LXXIX 26’ bottom left of the smaller portion of the reconstituted leaf
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
As Ruskin’s note in the right margin instructed, this leaf was cut vertically, causing confusion in its subsequent numbering. It was reconstituted, though not in its right place in the overall sequence, when the book was restitched. Ruskin’s intention was to prioritise the verso (D41427), part of which has a continuation of a carefully drawn study of the Battle of Trafalgar on what is now folio 15 (D05481; LXXXIX 26); evidently he meant to save only the drawn portion, amalgamating it with its constituent partner, and discarding the rest. His comment that there was ‘nothing’ on the ‘rest’ of it ignored the present sketches on the recto side. According to Turner’s annotations, these must attempt to reconstruct the design or position of the two French ships Redoutable (for which see chiefly folio 10, D05457; Turner Bequest LXXXIX 11) and Fougueux, both lost after the battle, and the colours and patterns of flags or signals used during it.

David Blayney Brown
March 2006

How to cite

David Blayney Brown, ‘Warships, including ‘Redoutable’ and ‘Fougueux’, and Flags 1805 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, March 2006, 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-warships-including-redoutable-and-fougueux-and-flags-r1139259, accessed 21 June 2024.