Joseph Mallord William Turner

The Burg at Cochem on the River Mosel from the South-East, beyond Sehl and the Brauselay Rocks


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite, watercolour and gouache on paper
Support: 150 × 191 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCXCII 16

Catalogue entry

Finberg suggested that Beilstein, on the River Mosel, is shown,1 but Turner did not record any subjects beyond Cochem, roughly five miles downstream, on this trip; for Beilstein in relation to his 1839 tour, see Alice Rylance-Watson’s entry for Tate D20239 (Turner Bequest CCXXI F), a gouache study on blue paper.
Jean-Claude Muller and Jean Luc Koltz correctly identified Cochem here, but gave the castle as the nearby Winneberg,2 seen in the distance in Tate D28950 and D29020 (Turner Bequest CCXCII 3, 69), also of 1840. Cecilia Powell discussed the actual subject in greater detail, noting the viewpoint as being ‘slightly closer’ than in another colour study (D28987; CCXCII 40).3 Looking down the River Mosel, the view is flanked by the low bank towards Sehl on the left, with the spire of the Antoniuskirche the only notable landmark. To the north-west, above the bend to the right, are the ruins of the Burg (since elaborately restored and known as the Reichsburg) south of Cochem; the riverside town itself is obscured by the dramatic Brauselay rocks framing the view on the opposite bank.4
For numerous contemporary studies of Cochem see under D28950; and for the full range of Mosel subjects associated with the present tour, see the Introduction to this subsection.
Finberg 1909, II, p.938.
See Muller and Koltz 1984, p.108; as noted in Powell 1995, p.146.
See Powell 1995, p.146.
See ibid. for more on some of these features.
Technical notes:
The pencil work is quite loose. Sails towards the right were reserved against the dark bank and slope, and not developed further.
Cecilia Powell has noted this as one of the many sheets of grey 1829 Bally, Ellen and Steart paper used on Turner’s 1840 tour, neatly torn as eighths or sixteenths of the overall sheet, with dimensions of around 190 x 280 or 140 x 190 mm, and variously worked with pencil, watercolour and gouache; see the technical notes in the overall Introduction for others.1
See Powell 1995, p.145.
Blank, with scattered pale brown staining; inscribed in pencil ’97 | b’ centre; stamped in black with Turner Bequest monogram over ‘CCXCII – 16’ towards bottom left; inscribed in pencil ‘D.28963’ towards bottom left.

Matthew Imms
September 2018

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