Reinhardsbrunn Castle, Friedrichroda, Thüringen, Germany
August 27, 1863
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The Belfry, the tallest in Belgium, was initially constructed, circa 1240, but was devastated by fire in 1280 and subsequently rebuilt. It was further added to between 1483-7, with the addition of the octagonal upper stage. Dominating its surroundings, the Belfry became symbolic of the freedom and wealth of the city.
This studio work is probably based on sketches drawn on Callow’s 1850 trip to Belgium when he visited Lille, Courtrai, Tournai, Bruges, Ghent and Antwerp. He records `At all these towns I had little time for seeing the sights, as I found so many architectural subjects admirably suited for my pencil’ (see William Callow – an Autobiography, 1908, p.105). Another watercolour of the same view but depicting the bustle of Market Day was executed in 1891.