Joseph Mallord William Turner

Burg Katz, Sankt Goarshausen and Sankt Goar, Looking Upstream from the Northern Edge of Sankt Goar


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 100 × 163 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCXC 52 a

Catalogue entry

The Burg Katz, seen on the left, stands on a ledge overlooking the Rhine and the sister towns of Sankt Goarshausen (directly beneath the castle) and Sankt Goar (in the foreground at right). The castle was first constructed in around 1371 by Count Wilhelm II of Katzenelnbogen as a bastion and military base to protect the Burg Rheinfels and to levy tolls from ships passing through this stretch of the Rhine.1 Katz was blown up by Napoleon in 1806 and later reconstructed in the late nineteenth century. The church at Sankt Goarshausen, identifiable by the narrow spire, is probably the late Gothic Evangelical Collegiate Church.
For other drawings of the Burg Katz in this sketchbook see Tate D28457, D28458, D28506; Turner Bequest CCXC 54, 54a, 78a. There are earlier depictions of the castle in the Waterloo and Rhine and Rhine sketchbooks of 1824 (Tate D12703, D12780, D12816, D12848, D12920, D12921, D12924–D12937, D12959, D12960; Turner Bequest CLX 1a, 41a, 59a, 75a, CLXI 22a, 23, 24a–30, 41a, 42). See also the highly finished watercolour of 1817 (Courtauld Institute Gallery, London) and the c.1844 watercolour On the Rhine: Looking over St Goar to Katz, from Rhinefels (Ashmolean Museum, Oxford).2

Alice Rylance-Watson
July 2013

‘Katz (Cat) Castle’, Loreley Info,, accessed 23 July 2013.
Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, p.375 no.645 and p.460 no.1329.

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