About this artwork

Lear arrived in Athens on 2 June 1848 and the next day wrote to his sister Ann: ‘… surely never was anything so magnificent as Athens! … the manner in which that huge mass of rock – the Acropolis stands above the modern town with its glittering white marble ruins against the deep blue sky’. This highly finished watercolour shows the Acropolis from the north-west. It was probably worked up from three sketches made in a single afternoon on a return visit in April 1849, now in the collection of the Gennadius Library, Athens.

  • title:
    Athens
  • accession number:
    D 5551.1
  • artist:
  • gallery:
  • object type:
  • materials:
    Pencil and brown ink with watercolour and gouache on grey paper
  • date created:
    1849
  • measurements:
    19.68 x 31.75 cm
  • credit line:
    Accepted by H.M. Government in lieu of Inheritance Tax and allocated to the National Gallery of Scotland, 2003

Edward Lear

Edward Lear