Rendered in fine and agile line, this drawing shows Trier from across the river near Pallien. The ancient Roman bridge is in full view, a structure which has connected the west bank to the city since the second century. A number of Trier’s most celebrated monuments can be seen, including: the Cathedral of St Peter, the Liebfrauenkirche, and St Gangolf’s Church.
For further depictions of Trier in this sketchbook see Tate D20091, D20111; Turner Bequest CCXVII 5, 17a; see also the Rivers Meuse and Moselle sketchbook (Tate D19725, D19726, D19728–D19730, D19732–D19743; Turner Bequest CCLXXXVIII 88a, 89, 90–91, 92–97a) and the Trèves and Rhine sketchbook (Tate D20141, D20142, D20145, D20146, D20148, D20149–D20154; Turner Bequest CCXVIII 3, 4, 7, 8, 10, 11–16). For later drawings, see Tate D28186, D28206, D28207, D28244, D28246, D28249, D28250, D28256, D28258–D28260, D28263, D28264; Turner Bequest CCLXXXVIII 10a, 20a, 21, 42a, 43a, 45a, 46, 50, 51–52, 54a, 55. There are also two gouache and watercolour drawings of the city: one of the Porta Nigra (Tate D20230; Turner Bequest CCXX W) and the other of Trier from the west (Tate D24715; Turner Bequest CCLIX 150).
The paper has mottled and browned significantly, a result of the drawing’s prolonged exhibition and exposure to sunlight during the nineteenth century.