Ships in a Breeze

Joseph Mallord William Turner, Published on 20 February 1808

WAG 741

About this object

This print, 'Ships in a Breeze', is plate 10 of Turner's 'Liber Studiorum' series. It is an example of the 'Marine' category of landscape painting. It was published with the 2nd part of the series on 20 February 1808.

The 'Liber Studiorum' illustrated Turner’s arguments for the supremacy of landscape painting. The title means ‘book of studies’ in Latin. It contained no written text, instead it was made up of individual mezzotint prints on paper. They were released in fourteen parts from around 1807 until 1819. Turner intended the 'Liber' to consist of 100 prints but only 71 were ultimately produced.

The prints reflected the five categories of landscape painting Turner believed existed: architectural, historical, marine, mountainous and pastoral. Turner wrote an initial on each work to indicate which category it belonged to.

Object specifics

  • Artist(s)
    Joseph Mallord William Turner (British: English, born:probably 23 April 1775, died:19 December 1851)
    Charles Turner (British, born:31 July 1774, died:01 August 1857)
  • Date
    Published on 20 February 1808
  • Materials
    Mezzotint; Paper
  • Measurements
    image: 18.2 cm x 25.8 cm
  • Physical description
    A seascape of five ships sailing on rough waters. On the left three figures sit on a pier which casts a long shadow across the sea. The sun breaks through dark thunder clouds in the top left corner.
  • Related people
    Charles Turner (Artist/maker, engraver); Joseph Mallord William Turner (Artist/maker)
  • Other number(s)
    WAG Inventory Number: 741
  • Credit line
    Purchased by the Walker Art Gallery in 1874
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Collection
    From the Walker Art Gallery collections


Item inscriptions

  • Inscription text: Drawn & Etched by J.M.W Turner. Esq. RA. P.P. Engraved by Charles Turner. In the possession of the Earl of Egremont 6 by 5 London. Published Feb 20 1808, by C Turner, No. 50 Warren Street Fitzroy Square.
    Inscription method: Printed
    Inscription note:
    Inscription location: Below Plate
  • Inscription text: M
    Inscription method: Printed
    Inscription note:
    Inscription location: Above plate
Object view = Fine Art
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