Francis Towne (1739 - 1816)
  • Head of Lake Geneva
Pencil, pen and brown ink, grey and blue washes
  • image width 260mm,
  • image length 368mm
stitch marks evident at top edge of paper
  • sheet, verso
  • “No.2 / Francis Towne”
Object Type
Monochrome wash

The Head of Lake Geneva from Vevey, after Francis Towne
Catalogue Number
Description Sources
Sotheby's records; Wilcox 1997 (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) inherited the drawing in May 1915 (BP80), and in 1930 Judith Merivale sold it to Norman Darnton Lupton (1875–1953) of Hyde Crook, Dorchester, Dorset, for £27 10s. with five other drawings (FT320, FT371, FT436, FT544, FT597). By 1962 the drawing was in the possession of Iolo Anuerin Williams (1890–1962), whose family sold it at Sotheby’s on 28 October 1971, lot 181, for £1,500 where it was bought by the Manning Gallery. It was in a “private collection” in 1997.

Associated People & Organisations

Private Collection
Manning Gallery, 28 October 1971, GBP 1500
Sotheby's, London, London, 28 October 1971, lot 181
Iolo Anuerin Williams (1890 - 1962), 1962
Agnes Lupton (1874 - 1950), Dorchester, 1930
Norman Darnton Lupton (1875 - 1953), Dorchester, 1930
Judith Ann Merivale (1860 - 1945), Oxford, May 1915, BP80
Maria Sophia Merivale (1853 - 1928), Oxford, May 1915, BP80
John Herman Merivale (1779 - 1844), 1825
James White (1744 - 1825), Exeter, 1816
Exhibition History
20th Anniversary Exhibition: English Drawings from Isaac Oliver to Paul Nash, Manning Gallery, 1972, no. 15
Francis Towne, Tate Gallery; Leeds City Art Gallery, 24 June 1997 - 4 January 1998, no. 41
Adrian Bury, Francis Towne - Lone Star of Water-Colour Painting, Charles Skilton: London, 1962, p. 149



Figure 1.
Francis Towne, FT374, FT375 and FT376 assembled together, 1781

This is the middle portion of Towne’s panoramic view of Lake Geneva (see the Comment at FT374).

It is odd that Norman Lupton, who owned the drawing from 1930, did not hang on to it and give it to Leeds City Art Gallery, since he owned and bequeathed to them the other two parts of the panorama.


by Richard Stephens

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