by J.C. Stadler, privately printed for Four Large Coloured Views in Sussex, 1818
Much has been written about this celebrated watercolour and Turner’s subtle references to the events of 1066. The boys are seen to represent the English army, while the snake has been interpreted as not only the invading Norman forces, but also the deadly arrow that pierced King Harold Godwinson’s right eye. Furthermore, Turner’s inclusion of the two rabbit holes, one of which is clearly the serpent’s destination, have been read as King Harold’s eyes, while the flat surface of the felled tree trunk to the right, would again appear to reference his famous death and the fall of the Anglo-Saxon world.
For further information on the history of this watercolour, please see lot 193.
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