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Drawing - A country road with elm trees
  • A country road with elm trees
    John Constable, born 1776 - died 1837
  • Enlarge image

A country road with elm trees

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Great Britain (drawn)

  • Date:

    ca. 1830-ca. 1836 (drawn)

  • Artist/Maker:

    John Constable, born 1776 - died 1837 (drawn by)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Pencil, pen and bistre wash

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Isabel Constable, daughter of the artist

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level H, case WD, shelf 16

Constable's late wash drawings are notable for their free handling and almost expressionistic quality. This view of a country road is relatively restrained and more highly finished than some of its cousins. However, the rather menacing group of elm trees that blocks the horizon is characteristic of the dark mood common to his last drawings.

Physical description

A pencil, pen and bistre wash drawing of a country road winding toward a group of elm trees. Houses are visible in the distance, upper left.

Place of Origin

Great Britain (drawn)


ca. 1830-ca. 1836 (drawn)


John Constable, born 1776 - died 1837 (drawn by)

Materials and Techniques

Pencil, pen and bistre wash

Marks and inscriptions

pencil scribbles
On back, presumably by artist.


Height: 80 mm, Width: 112 mm

Object history note

This may be one of the last drawings Constable completed. Reynolds groups with with 248-1888 and 816-1888 as representative examples of the last phase of Constable's draughtsmanship.

Historical context note

'In 1836 Constable's two exhibits at the Royal Academy were the 'Cenotaph to the memory of Sir Joshua Reynolds' (now in the Tate Gallery, No. 1272) and the watercolour 'Stonehenge' (No. 395 [1629-1888]). He gave four lectures on 'The History of Landscape Painting' at the Royal Institution in May and June of this year and his last lecture, at Hampstead, on 25 July. Constable died on 31 March 1837. His almost completed painting 'Arundel Mill and Castle' (now in the Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo, Ohio; see No. 379 [260-1888]) was exhibited posthumously at the Royal Academy.'

[G Reynolds, 1973, p. 233]

Descriptive line

Drawing of a country road with elm trees, by John Constable

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Catalogue of the Constable Collection, Graham Reynolds, Victoria and Albert Museum, London: HMSO, 1973, pp. 233, 241

Production Note

This drawing, along with Reynolds cat. nos. 412 and 413, are grouped together as examples of the last phase of Constable's draughtsmanship due to their resemblance to other late drawings of known date.


Pencil; Pen; Bistre


Drawing; Wash technique

Subjects depicted

Roads; Elm




Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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