Description
Creator
Francis Towne (1739 - 1816)
Title(s)
  • A View near Hornsey
Date
1786
Medium
Pen and brown ink, watercolour
Dimensions
  • image height 146mm,
  • image length 184mm
Inscription
  • sheet, recto, lower left
  • “F.Towne / 1786[?]”
Inscription
  • sheet, verso
  • “A View near Hornsey”
Object Type
Watercolour

Collection
Catalogue Number
FT452
Description Sources
Christie’s records (image); Sotheby’s records

Provenance

Bequeathed by the artist in 1816 to James White of Exeter (1744–1825), on whose death it passed to Towne’s residuary legatee John Herman Merivale (1779–1844) and his successors. Merivale’s granddaughter Emily Harriet Buckingham (1853–1923) inherited the drawing in 1915 and bequeathed it to her sister Frances Ann Laura Solly (b.1858). On 2 March 1936 she sold it to Agnew’s (no.1855) for £6, and they sold it (on 29 February 1936 according to Agnew’s) for £9 9s. to Miss N. Butler, who sold it back to Agnew’s (no.6038) on 7 October 1947 for £10. On 11 October 1949 Agnew’s sold it for £28 10s. to Gilbert Davis (1899–1983), who sold it at Sotheby’s on 19 May 1954, lot 39, for £20 to Agnew’s (no.7509), who sold it to Lieutenant Commander George Gosselin Marten of Crichel, Wimborne (d.1997). It was sold by a relative at Christie’s on 3 March 1970, lot 102, for £441, and at Christie’s South Kensington on 28 January 2015, lot 758.

Associated People & Organisations

Private Collection, 28 January 2015, GBP 8125
Christie's, London, London, 25 January 2015, lot 758
Private Collection, 3 March 1970, GBP 441
Christie's, London, London, 3 March 1970, lot 102
F. W. Marten
Lieutenant Commander George Gosselin Marten ( - 1997), Crichel, Wimborne
Thomas Agnew & Sons, London, 19 May 1954, GBP 20, no.7509
Sotheby's, London, London, 19 May 1954, lot 39
Gilbert Davis (1899 - 1983), 11 October 1949, GBP 28.10s
Thomas Agnew & Sons, London, 11 October 1947, GBP 10, no.6038
Miss N. Butler, 29 February 1936, GBP 9.9s
Thomas Agnew & Sons, London, 2 March 1936, GBP 6, no.1855
Frances Ann Laura Solly (1858 - alive in 1932), 1923
Emily Harriet Buckingham (1853 - 1923), 1915
John Herman Merivale (1779 - 1844), 1825
James White (1744 - 1825), Exeter, 1816

Comment

Towne’s connections with Hornsey, a village north of London, are unknown. It is just possible, although unlikely, that there are two drawings of Hornsey, dated 1783 and 1786, as the date given at both exhibitions was 1783. Examination of the photograph suggests the date is probably 1786, but the 1954 Sotheby’s catalogue, based on a direct examination of the sheet, stated that it was “indistinctly dated”. Oppé saw the drawing in Emily Buckingham’s collection and dated it to 1786.1 The style is similar to Towne’s 1787 studies at Chudleigh Rocks.

by Richard Stephens

Footnotes

  1. 1 Paul Oppé records.

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