Joseph Mallord William Turner

View across Meuse at Verdun Showing Wooden Bridge, Porte Chaussée, Jesuits’ Church and Cathedral of Notre-Dame; Details of Jesuit’s Church and Cathedral


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 101 × 168 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLXXXVIII 23 a

Catalogue entry

This is a sketch of the town of Verdun with its wooden bridge leading to a fortified city gate: the Porte Chaussée. A formidable piece of medieval masonry, comprised of two impenetrable conical and crenellated towers, the Porte Chaussée was constructed in 1380, funded by a wealthy local draper called Jean Wautrec.1 To the right of the gate can be seen St Nicholas’s Chapel, a seventeenth-century Jesuit church, and beyond that, one of the towers of the Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Verdun. Details of the last two of these monuments are repeated below the principal image, Turner inscribing ‘Cath’ (short for ‘Cathedral’) between them.
For other representations of Verdun in this sketchbook see Tate D28211, D28213–D28215; Turner Bequest CCLXXXVIII 23, 24–25a.
‘Chaussée Tower’, Site de la Communauté de Communes de Verdun et de la ville de Verdun,, accessed 21 May 2013.
Technical notes:
There is some creasing of the paper at the top of the page.

Alice Rylance-Watson
May 2013

Read full Catalogue entry

You might like

In the shop