Courtesy of The National Library of Wales | Licence: Public Domain
Courtesy of The National Library of Wales | Licence: Public Domain

From the Hotel de l'Europe Königswinter


16 May 1853


Collective Title

Album of watercolour views

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From the Collection

Image Licence

Image Credit

Courtesy of The National Library of Wales

From the Watercolour World


Königswinter, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany


Tww Comment

The Drachenfels ("Dragon's Rock") is a hill in the Siebengebirge uplands between Königswinter and Bad Honnef in Germany. The ruined castle Burg Drachenfels, on the summit of the hill, was built between 1138 and 1167 by Archbishop Arnold I of Cologne and bears the same name. It was originally intended for the protection of the Cologne region from any assault from the south. The castle was destroyed in 1634, during the Thirty Years' War, by the Protestant Swedes and never rebuilt. The rock, like the rest of the Siebengebirge, is formed by the remnants of a volcano and has been the site of a trachyte quarry since Roman times, which, amongst others, delivered the building material for the Cologne Cathedral. The rock and the ruins gained popularity in the romantic era, after the Napoleonic Wars had ended. The visit of Lord Byron and its appearance in Childe Harold's Pilgrimage provided the rock with international attention. Several legends surround the Drachenfels, most famously that Siegfried – the hero of the Nibelungenlied – killed the dragon Fafnir, who lived in a cave in the hill. Hence, the hill is named the "Dragon's Rock", Drachenfels.