Francis Towne (1739 - 1816)
  • A Waterfall by the Side of Lake Geneva
ca. 1781/08 - 1781/09
Pencil, pen and grey ink, grey wash
  • image width 210mm,
  • image length 156mm
  • verso
  • "No.56 / A waterfall by the side of the Lake of / Geneva 3 miles from Vivey / Francis Towne / Septr.23, light from the left hand"
Object Type
Monochrome wash

Catalogue Number
Description Sources
Examination; Museum records (image)


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 (BP88). Judith Merivale sold it in 1935 to Sir Montagu Montagu-Pollock (1864–1938), whose son Sir William Montagu-Pollock (1903–1993) sold it at Sotheby’s on 18 March 1964, lot 27, where it was bought by Hazlitt Gooden & Fox for £500 on behalf of the present owner, the Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Exeter (126/1964).

Associated People & Organisations

Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery, Exeter, 18 March 1964, 126/1964
Hazlitt Gooden & Fox Ltd, 18 March 1964, GBP 500
Acquired on behalf of the Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Exeter
Sotheby's, London, London, 18 March 1964, lot 27
Sir William Montagu-Pollock (1903 - 1993)
Sir Montagu Montagu-Pollock (1864 - 1938), 1935
Judith Ann Merivale (1860 - 1945), Oxford, May 1915, BP88
Maria Sophia Merivale (1853 - 1928), Oxford, May 1915, BP88
John Herman Merivale (1779 - 1844), 1825
James White (1744 - 1825), Exeter, 1816
Exhibition History
Paintings and Drawings by Francis Towne and John White Abbott in the collection of Exeter Museums and Art Gallery, Royal Albert Memorial Museum, 1971, no. 11
Francis Towne & John White Abbott: Paintings and Watercolours from the Exeter Museums and Art Gallery, Marble Hill House, 1973, no. 11
Amal Asfour & Paul Williamson, 'William Jackson and John Bampfylde on the Teign', Apollo, No. 426, Apollo Magazine Ltd: London, 1997, p. 39
Jane C. Baker, Catalogue of Oil Paintings, Watercolours, Drawings and Sculpture, Exeter Museums: Exeter, 1978, p. 118


This is a view of the waterfall at Rivaz, a village on the northern shore of Lake Geneva a few miles west of Vevey. The falls were by the lakeside road where there was also a mill.

by Richard Stephens

Revisions & Feedback

The website will be updated from time to time and, when changes are made, a PDF of the previous version of each page will be archived here for consultation and citation.

Please help us to improve this catalogue

If you have information, a correction or any other suggestions to improve this catalogue, please contact us.