Francis Towne (1739 - 1816)
  • A View in Hyde Park looking towards the Serpentine River
Pen and grey ink, grey wash
  • image width 185mm,
  • image length 145mm
  • verso
  • “No.6 / F.Towne delt July 5th 1797 / A view in Hyde Park looking / towards the Serpentine River / No.114 New Bond Street.”

Catalogue Number
Description Sources
Sotheby's records (image)


Bequeathed by the artist in 1816 to James White of Exeter (1745–1825), on whose death it passed to Towne’s residuary legatee John Herman Merivale (1779–1844) and his successors. Merivale’s granddaughters Maria Sophia Merivale (1853–1928) and Judith Ann Merivale (1860–1945), both of Oxford, inherited the drawing in May 1915 (BP214). In August 1933 Judith Merivale sold it to Miss Emily Norrie (perhaps 1891–1973) of Pequot Avenue, New London, Connecticut, for £5. It was sold at Sotheby’s on 11 November 1993, lot 102, for £1,800, since when it is untraced.

Associated People & Organisations

Private Collection, 11 November 1993, GBP 1800
Sotheby's, London, London, 11 November 1993, lot 102
Emily Norrie (1891 - 1973), New London, Connecticut, August 1933, GBP 5
Judith Ann Merivale (1860 - 1945), Oxford, May 1915, BP214
Maria Sophia Merivale (1853 - 1928), Oxford, May 1915, BP214
John Herman Merivale (1779 - 1844), 1825
James White (1744 - 1825), Exeter, 1816
Timothy Wilcox, Francis Towne, Tate Publishing: London, 1997, p. 133


Oppé’s note reads: “214 Hyde Park 1797 Ugly drawn in Ind ink, foliage & trunks.”1 Wilcox described Towne’s “embarrassing lack of success” in this “experiment”, a response to “technical and stylistic trends in recent landscape painting”.2

Towne drew a view of Vauxhall on the same day as this sketch (FT594).

by Richard Stephens


  1. 1 Paul Oppé records: notes, ca. 1915.
  2. 2 Wilcox 1997, p.133.

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