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The Life Of J.M.W. Turner, R.A. Founded On Letters And Papers Furnished By His Friends And Fellow Academicians. By Walter Thornbury. [Epigraph] In Two Volumes. Vol. I. (II.)

Walter Thornbury

RA Collection: Book

Record number




London:: Hurst And Blackett, Publishers, Successors To Henry Colburn, 13, Great Marlborough Street., 1862. The right of Translation is reserved.

Physical Description

2 vols.; 218 mm. (Octavo.)

General Note

Vol. I: xiv, [2], 416 p., frontis. (port.), [1] pl.: [1] illus. - Vol. II: vi, 425, [1] p., [3] pl.: [1] illus.


Vol. I: [Half-t., frontis., t.p.] - Preface - Contents Of The First Volume - List Of Illustrations. Vol. I. (II.) - [Text and pl.]. - Vol. II: [Half-t., t.p.] - Contents Of The Second Volume - [Text and pl.] - Appendix.

Responsibility Note

In Volume I the frontispiece portrait of Turner is unsigned, but is described in the 'List Of Illustrations' as from a statue by P. Macdowell, R.A.; the plate and in-text illustration are unsigned. In Volume II the first plate is signed by 'PWJ'; the second is captioned as from Dance's portrait and is signed as engraved by Pearson; the third is captioned as from Baily's statue. The in-text illustration is captioned as from a drawing by Maclise.

The printer is named on the versos of the title pages: 'London: Savill And Edwards, Printers, Chandos Street, Covent Garden.'


E. Joll, ed., The Oxford companion to J.M.W. Turner (2001); J. Gage, J.M.W. Turner (1987); A. Wilton, Turner in his time (1979); Turner 1775-1851 [Royal Academy and Tate exhibition catalogue] (1974); A.J. Finberg, Life of J.M.W. Turner R.A. (rev. 1961).

Summary Note

This was the first biography of Turner, and contains several inaccuracies. Fuller or more perceptive accounts were provided by John Ruskin in his Modern painters (1843-60), P.G. Hamerton's Life of J.M.W. Turner (1879) and W. Armstrong's Turner (1902).

Immediate source of Acquisition

Purchased in, 1867. (See Librarian's Report, RA Annual Report for 1867, p. 26).

Binding Note

19th-century half blue morocco, blue cloth-covered boards; spines lettered 'Life Of Turner 1 (2) Thornbury' and 'R.A.'

Name as Subject


Paintes - Artists - Great Britain - History - 18th century - 19th century
Biography - Art history - Great Britain - 19th century


Patrick MacDowell RA, source artist
George Dance RA, source artist
Edward Hodges Baily RA, source artist
Daniel Maclise RA, source artist
Hurst and Blackett (London), publisher
Savill and Edwards (London), printer