Francis Towne (1739 - 1816)
  • Near Glarus
ca. 1781/09/02
Pencil, pen and brown ink, grey-brown wash
  • image width 465mm,
  • image length 284mm
on paper watermarked “C&I HONIG”, cut irregularly along the left edge and with a vertical crease towards the left
  • sheet, verso
  • “No25, Near Glaris, light from the right hand in the morning / Sept. 2nd 1781 / Francis Towne” in brown ink, and elsewhere “near Glaris / light on the right hand”
  • in pencil
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 Oxord, inherited the drawing in May 1915 (BP70). On 9 March 1934 Judith Merivale sold it to Agnew’s (no.1580) for £8, where it was purchased the same day by Walter Sedgwick (d.1950) for £12 12s. It was sold by the estate of his widow Jacquetta Sedgwick (d.1968) at Sotheby’s on 27 June 1968, lot 76, for £1,500 to Agnew’s (no.8526), who bought it on behalf of the current owner, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (68.93).

Associated People & Organisations

Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 27 June 1968, 68.93
Thomas Agnew & Sons, London, 27 June 1968, GBP 1500, no.8526
Acquired on behalf of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
Sotheby's, London, London, 27 June 1968, lot 76
Jacquetta Sedgwick ( - 1968), 9 March 1934, GBP 12 12s
Walter Sedgwick ( - 1950), 9 March 1934, GBP 12 12s
Thomas Agnew & Sons, London, 9 March 1934, GBP 8, no.1580
Judith Ann Merivale (1860 - 1945), Oxford, May 1915, BP70
Maria Sophia Merivale (1853 - 1928), Oxford, May 1915, BP70
John Herman Merivale (1779 - 1844), 1825
James White (1744 - 1825), Exeter, 1816
Exhibition History
Annual Exhibition of Water-Colours & Drawings, Thomas Agnew & Sons, 1934, no. 64
Recently Acquired Drawings, Prints and Illustrated Books, Metropolitan Museum of Art, 8 January to 30 March 1969
Glorious Nature: British Landscape Painting 1750-1850, Denver Art Museum, 1993, no. 25
Jacob and McKendry Bean, Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, No. 6: New York, 1969, p. 319


The precise location of this landscape is unknown. However, as it was made on the same morning as, but (based on the lighting) in the opposite direction from, the drawing of Lake Klönthal (FT368), it may depict the path back from the lake to the Glarus valley floor.

by Richard Stephens

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