Skip to main content


The Turner Bequest

The Turner Bequest is the name given to the gift of a large number of paintings and drawings which the English artist Joseph Mallord William Turner (1775 - 1851) made posthumously to the nation. Most of these works are now in the Tate Britain - in one institution, as he wished.

A small number of important paintings by him are also hung in the National Gallery. In his will the artist specified that he wanted his 'Dido building Carthage' to be hung between Claude's 'Embarkation of the Queen of Sheba' and the 'Marriage of Isaac and Rebekah' - works which formed the prime inspiration for his painting. The pictures are now together in Room 15.