Joseph Mallord William Turner

Oberwesel and the Schönburg, Looking Upstream


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 74

Catalogue entry

Here Turner has recorded a prospect of Oberwesel, a town on the Rhine’s left bank situated between Sankt Goar and Bacharach. The view encompasses the Pfarrkirche Liebfrauen, the tower of Saint Martin’s Parish Church, Saint Werner’s Chapel with its onion-shaped dome, the Ochsenturm, and the numerous defensive towers connected to Oberwesel’s city walls. The Schönburg Castle, for centuries home to the dukes of that name, is atop the mount. Turner has inscribed what appears to read ‘Sonberg’ at the foot of the drawing.
For other sketches of Oberwesel in this sketchbook see Tate D28470, D28483–D28485, D28487–D28491; CCXC 60a, 67–68, 69–71. The town and Castle Schönburg also feature in the 1817 Itinerary Rhine Tour and Waterloo and Rhine sketchbooks (Tate D12621–D12623, D12832, D12834–D12837; Turner Bequest CLIX 59–60, CLX 67am 68a–70).

Alice Rylance-Watson
July 2013

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