Joseph Mallord William Turner

Trier from Pallien; The Roman Column at Igel; Hills near Trier


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 118 × 78 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCXVI 90

Catalogue entry

The uppermost view shows Trier, taken from a vantage point in the village of Pallien on the opposite side of the Moselle to the city. A small bridge can be seen at the banks of the river, with two waterwheels at right and beyond, the miniature profiles of Trier’s Liebfrauenkirche and Cathedral. Clarkson Stanfield (1793–1867) produced a similar view to this drawing, though his was taken from the riverbank looking back towards the bridge, the waterwheels and Pallien. Stanfield’s view was engraved and published in his Sketches on the Moselle, the Rhine, and the Meuse of 1838.1
Running parallel to the gutter of the sketchbook is a study of the Igel Column. This was a burial monument erected in honour of a cloth merchant family of the Secundinii in around AD 250.2 The square sandstone obelisk is decorated with a scheme of bas-reliefs depicting the economic prosperity of Trier during its Roman occupation. William Pars (1742–1782), the English landscape and portrait watercolourist, produced a highly finished drawing of the Igel Column in 1770 which was later engraved in 1774 (Tate T09405 and Tate impression T11677). The remaining sketches are small and slight renderings of the hilly Moselle valley around Trier.

Alice Rylance-Watson
April 2014

See Stanfield’s view of Pallien and a full copy of his Sketches on the Moselle, the Rhine, and the Meuse on Dilibri Rhineland-Pfalz, accessed 30 April 2014,
‘Igel Column’, Trier Info, accessed 24 April 2014,

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