image © Guy Peppiatt Fine Art | Licence: All Rights Reserved
image © Guy Peppiatt Fine Art | Licence: All Rights Reserved

The Castle and Bridge at Melfi, Basilicata, Italy


21 September, 1847


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From the Collection


Lear visited Melfi from 17th to 22nd September 1847 while he was living in Rome. Having visited Sicily in May and June 1847, he toured Southern Italy from July until October. He described the castle as `sufficiently imposing at this silent hour of night. There is a drawbridge, and sullen gates, and dismal court-yards, and massive towers, and seneschals with keys and fierce dogs – all the requisites of the feudal fortress of romance’ (see Edward Lear in Southern Italy, 1964, pp. 182-184).

Melfi is in the central southern area of Basilicata to the east of Naples.
A wash drawing of Melfi, also dated 21st September 1847, was with Guy Peppiatt Fine Art in 2013 (see One Hundred Drawings and Watercolours, 2013-14, no.51) and is now in a private collection


Signed lower right: Edward Lear. del./21. Sept/1847 and inscribed lower left: Castello di Melfi/in Basilicata.

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image © Guy Peppiatt Fine Art

From the Watercolour World


Castle of Melfi, Potenza, Italy