Joseph Mallord William Turner

Niederlahnstein, Burg Lahneck, Oberlahnstein and the Martinsburg, Looking Downstream


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 51

Catalogue entry

Here Turner depicts both Upper and Lower Lahnstein, looking downstream on the Rhine. The Burg Lahneck, which dominates Niederlahnstein, can be seen atop the mount and the Schloss Martinsburg, which presides over Oberlahnstein, is at right. The latter of these castles was constructed for the electors of Mainz in 1244 and rebuilt between 1497 and 1503.1 The six-cornered keep is depicted clearly in the present sketch.
For depictions of Burg Lahneck, Niederlahnstein and Oberlahnstein elsewhere in this sketchbook see Tate D28448, D28450, D28452–D28453, D28524–D28528; Turner Bequest CCXC 49a, 50a, 51a–52, 85–87. For earlier views see the Itinerary Rhine Tour sketchbook of 1817 (Tate D12659; Turner Bequest CCLIX 81a); the Waterloo and Rhine and Rhine sketchbooks of the same date (Tate D12808, D12811, D12812, D12852, D12906, D12907, D12911, D12980; Turner Bequest CLX 55a, 57, 57a, 77, CLXI 13a, 14, 17, 52). See also the 1824 sketchbooks Rivers Meuse and Moselle and Trèves and Rhine (Tate D19829, D19831, D19833, D19834, D20157, D20159; Turner Bequest CCXVI 139a, 140a, 141a, 142, CCXVIII 19, 21).

Alice Rylance-Watson
July 2013

Robert R. Taylor, The Castles of the Rhine: Recreating the Middle Ages in Modern Germany, Wilfrid Laurier University Press, Waterloo, Ontario 1998, p.272

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