• Victorian & British Impression auction at Christies

    Sale 7788

    Victorian & British Impressionist Pictures Including Drawings and Watercolours

    16 December 2009, London, King Street

  • Lot 66

    John Ruskin, H.R.W.S. (1819-1900)

    Rocks on the Wharfe

    Price Realised  


    John Ruskin, H.R.W.S. (1819-1900)
    Rocks on the Wharfe
    inscribed 'Rocks on the Wharfe, above the "Strid" of the Boy of Egremont [sic]. August 15. 1837' (lower right)
    pencil, corners cut, on paper
    14 x 10¼ in. (35.5 x 26 cm.); and a pencil drawing of a house (2)

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    'The Boy of Egremont' was the son of the 12th Century warlord and Scottish prince William FitzDuncan about whom William Wordsworth wrote a poem. At Bolton, on the river Wharf at a place called the Strid, the boy was halted while leaping from one bank to the other, by the hesitation of his dog, and was pulled into the river and drowned. The attraction of Ruskin's visit was to see the site of Turner's drawing of The Boy of Egremont.

    The second drawing in this lot dates from circa 1831 and can be compared with Rocks at Tunbridge Wells, (Ruskin Library and Research Centre, University of Lancaster). Ruskin was in Kent staying with the Gale family in Canterbury in May 1831 and May 1832.

    We are grateful to Dr James S. Dearden and Stephen Wildman for his help in preparing this catalogue entry.

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 15% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.


    John Ruskin, his sale at Brantwood, where purchased by
    T. Telford of Grasmere, from whom purchased by the present owner.


    E.T. Wedderburn and A. Cook, Library Edition of the Works of John Ruskin, 1903-12, vol. I, p. xxxvi, n. 3, vol. XXXVIII, p. 306, no. 2132.
    K. Hanley and S. Wildman, John Ruskin's Romantic Tours 1837-8 Travelling North, Lampeter, 2007, p. 155 as unlocated.