This view was based on drawn studies made by Turner in Rome in 1828. The prominent building at the lower left is the eighteenth-century hospice of San Michele. It seems likely that the picture was commissioned by the Scottish collector H. A. J. Monro of Novar. It is one of three paintings Turner exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1836 which were savagely criticised in Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine. This damning estimation of them had a positive effect however, as it inspired John Ruskin to take up his life-long championing of Turner’s art.