Image of Gallery in South Kensington
Request to view at the Prints & Drawings Study Room, level D , Case KK, Shelf 23

Constantinople from the Asian shore

ca. 1751 (painted)
Place of origin

Watercolour drawing

Object details
Object type
Materials and techniques
Ink and watercolour on two pieces of laid paper joined, mounted on modern wove paper
Brief description
Watercolour, Constantinople from the Asian shore. [Panorama of Constantinople], about 1751, by Giovanni Battista Borra
Physical description
Watercolour drawing
  • Height: 42cm
  • Width: 122.4cm
Marks and inscriptions
Inscribed on back of former mount Constantinople, the seven T[owers] on the left, Topana Gala[ta] Pera on the Right; taken [from the] Asiatic Shore.
Credit line
Purchased with the assistance of the National Heritage Memorial Fund, Art Fund, Shell International and the Friends of the V&A
Object history
According to Rodney Searight: - `The two [SD121 & 122] drwgs bt fr W.T.Spencer, Dec.1966 £85'.
Historical context
The watercolour is based on sketches (notably on pp.81, 82, 84, 86, in the large sketchbook, item 16 in the Wood Collection at the Hellenic Society) made by Borra during a tour of the circumference of the city on 2 July 1750. He and his patrons were in Constantinople between 16 June and 10 July 1750: see Hutton, 1927, p.111 and Searight Archive. The view is from the region of Üsküdar (Hydarpasa) across the Sea of Marmara to the city of Stamboul, extending from Yediküle on left to Saray Burnu at the mouth of the Golden Horn; to right are Galata and Pera (now Beyoglu).
Places depicted
Bibliographic reference
Searight, Rodney. The Middle East : watercolours and drawings by British and foreign artists and travellers, 1750-1900, from the collection of Rodney Searight, Esq. London, 1971
Accession number

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Record createdOctober 4, 2007
Record URL
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