Francis Towne (1739 - 1816)
  • Lake Albano
Pencil, pen and grey ink, grey/brown wash
  • image width 318mm,
  • image length 457mm
olaid paper watermarked "J WHATMAN" with a vertical crease down its centre
  • sheet, verso
  • “No2 Lake of Albano / Evening Sun behind the trees on the left / hand/ July the 10th. 1781 / Francis Towne” in brown ink, and elsewhere, “A Copy of this painted on canvass the same size for James Curtis Esq. 1784.”
Object Type

Lake Albano
Catalogue Number
Description Sources
Examination; Christie's 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 (BP23). In 1933 Judith Merivale sold it for £6 10s. to Squire Gallery, where in February 1934 it was bought by Leonard Duke (1889–1971) for 16½ guineas (no.D105). Duke sold the drawing to Nigel Warren QC (1912–1967) for £200 in November 1955, and it was sold, probably by his heirs, at Christie’s on 6 June 2002, lot 9, for £26,290 (including fees) to a US private collector, who retained it until 2014, when it was acquired by Lowell Libson Ltd.

Associated People & Organisations

Private Collection
Lowell Libson, London, 2014
Private Collection, 6 June 2002, GBP 26290
Christie's, London, London, 2002, lot 9
Nigel Warren (1912 - 1967), November 1955, GBP 200
Leonard Duke (1889 - 1971), February 1934, GBP 16.5gns, no.D105
Squire Gallery, London, 1933, GBP 6.10s
Judith Ann Merivale (1860 - 1945), Oxford, May 1915, BP23
Maria Sophia Merivale (1853 - 1928), Oxford, May 1915, BP23
John Herman Merivale (1779 - 1844), 1825
James White (1744 - 1825), Exeter, 1816
Exhibition History
Three Exeter Artists of the Eighteenth Century: Francis Hayman RA, Francis Towne, John White Abbott, Royal Albert Memorial Museum, 1951, no. 188
Thomas Jones ed. Paul Oppé, 'Memoirs of Thomas Jones', The Walpole Society: London, 1951, p. 55

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.