The Temple of Clitumnus

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The Temple of Clitumnus
The Temple of Clitumnus
The Temple of Clitumnus
The Marignoli di Montecorona Foundation
title=Credit line
Richard Wilson (1713/14-1782)
The Temple of Clitumnus
c.1755 (undated)
Oil on canvas
Metric: 61.5 x 75 cm
Imperial: 24 x 29 1/2 in.
The Marignoli di Montecorona Foundation, Spoleto
Wilson Online Reference
Wilson is said to have described a version of this view as 'the scenery taken from the long famed [Temple of] Clitumnus, near the once mystic temple of Juno which I have herein restored from its state in ruins, as seen near the source gently cascading into the streamlet, from whence flows that classic river. The period of time described produces the effects of those lights, &c. which succeeds the dawn of day, interspersed with the vapours and subdued tints that accompany the morning atmosphere.' (Christie's sale catalogue, 28 June 1814 (82))
Frederick Seymour Clarke, 40 Portman Square, London W.1; sold Christie's 10 February 1933 (40), bt Leggatt (£81.18s.); Major W.H.S. Alston, London; Colonel John Alston, Albany, Piccadilly London W.1; his sale, Christie's 20 June 1969 (109), bt Greenfield (£788); Sotheby's, 5 June 2008 (47), bt by present owner
Verso: 'The Sanctuary of the god Clitumnus, by the side of a small | river in Umbria, which springs from a beautiful rock in a | grove of cyprus trees, falling into the Tinia, a tributary | of the Tiber | RICHARD WILSON, R.A.
The setting is a temple supposedly once the sanctuary of the god, Clitumnus, near Spoleto in Umbria, which was converted into a Christian church in the 4th century A.D. It stands besides the source of a spring from which rises the river also known as Clitumnus.
Related Prints
E8 Giuseppe Vasi after Wilson, Veduta del Tempio, e Fiume del Clitunno nello Stato presente, The British Museum
See 'Links' tab
Related Works by Other Artists
[1] J.M.W. Turner, Wilson Sketchbook, 1796-97, p. pp. 78-79, Tate, London
Critical commentary
The classical associations of the site made the temple a popular destination for Grand Tourists, and Wilson must have visited there on his journey from Venice to Rome with William Lock of Norbury and Thomas Jenkins in late 1751. No outdoor drawings of the site by Wilson survive but an etching by Giuseppe Vasi (E8) reproducing a finished drawing by him, was published in Rome in 1753 and must represent his earliest known treatment of the subject.
WGC, p. 197, pl. 75b (version 3)
Link to WG Constable Archive Record
More Information
The site was later celebrated by Byron in Childe Harold's Pilgrimage (1812), canto iv, stanzas lxvi-lxviii.
Updated by Compiler
2021-05-18 00:00:00