This drawing was probably made by Cotman in 1800 when he was staying with the bookseller Joseph Cottle at Bristol.

Cottle had recently published the poems of Robert Southey, and it was Southey's lines which inspired this dramatic composition: High on a rock whose castle's shade Darkened the lake below In ancient strength majestic stood The Tower of Arkinlow.


L.G.Duke collection, his sale Sotheby's, 21/5/70, lot 3; Sir John Witt; Sotheby's 19/2/87, lot 101.

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