Francis Towne (1739 - 1816)
  • Isola Bella
ca. 1781/08/25
Agnew’s described it as “Isola Bella monochrome” in 1936, which indicates that it had washes, probably grey-brown in colour
  • sheet, verso
  • “Isola Bella”, dated 25 August 1781, and numbered “7”
Object Type
Monochrome wash

Catalogue Number
Description Sources
Barton Place catalogue


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 granddaughters Maria Sophia Merivale (1853–1928) and Judith Ann Merivale (1860–1945), both of Oxford, inherited the drawing in May 1915 (BP49). On 27 February 1936 Judith Merivale sold it to Agnew’s (no.1846) for £8, where it was bought (on 26 February 1936 according to Agnew’s) for £12 12s. by Ruth Frances Darwin (1882/1883–1972, from 1948 Mrs William Rees-Thomas), whereafter it is untraced.

Associated People & Organisations

Ruth Frances Darwin (1882/83 - 1972), 26 February 1936, GBP 12.12s
Thomas Agnew & Sons, London, 27 February 1936, GBP 8, no.1846
Judith Ann Merivale (1860 - 1945), Oxford, May 1915, BP49
Maria Sophia Merivale (1853 - 1928), Oxford, May 1915, BP49
John Herman Merivale (1779 - 1844), 1825
James White (1744 - 1825), Exeter, 1816
Exhibition History
Annual Exhibition of Water-Colour & Pencil Drawings, Thomas Agnew & Sons, 1936, no. 83


Isola Bella, an island on Lake Maggiore, was also depicted in the following drawing of the series, FT350.


by Richard Stephens

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