North Porch of Salisbury Cathedral

Circa 1796
By J M W Turner

This was one of the first Salisbury subjects that Turner completed for Sir Richard Colt Hoare.  Ultimately there would be eight views of the Cathedral in the set, all painted on sheets of roughly the same dimensions. The pencil sketch of the North Porch that Turner made on the spot in 1795 includes neither the scaffolding on the left, which probably relates to Wyatt’s restorations, nor the many figures. Turner introduced a procession making its way towards the porch (possibly including an elaborate hearse). This may be something he witnessed, or was perhaps intended to be symbolic.

Acquired with the financial assistance of the V&A Purchase Grant Fund, The Art Fund, The LJ Skaggs and Mary C Skaggs Foundation, The Pilgrim Trust and the Idlewild Trust.

Other items in the History of Salisbury Gallery collection