Kranichstein Castle, Darmstadt, Germany

Kranichstein Castle, Darmstadt, Germany

Thomas Shotter Boys (1803-1874)
Kranichstein Castle, Darmstadt, Germany

Signed lower left:
Krantchstein/T.S. Boys 63
Watercolour over traces of pencil heightened with bodycolour
33 by 45.4 cm., 13 by 18 in.

With Thos. Agnew & Sons (38225)

London, The New Watercolour Society, 1863, no. 179 as `The Castle at Kranichstein, near Darmstadt; belonging to HRH the Grand Duke of Hesse Darmstadt. From a sketch by Mr Montague Cooke'

Boys travelled throughout his life, both in Britain and through Europe. His sister Mary and brother-in-law William John Cooke, cousin of the celebrated marine artist Edward William Cooke, R.A. (1811-1880) and fellow pupil of George Cooke, moved to Darmstadt in 1840 and Boys visited them several times in 1842 and 1843.

Montague Cooke on whose work, this watercolour is based, is likely to be William Montague Cooke, Boys' nephew, who gave drawing lessons to the children of Princess Alice, grand duchess of Hesse and of Rhine.

The family of Hessen-Darmstadt ruled the Darmstadt area of Germany from the mid-16
th century. In 1578, Count George I, commissioned the palatial Jagdschloss Kranichstein to be built in the north of the city, as his hunting lodge, surrounded by vast forests. In 1917, the palace was opened as a museum and the complex today also includes a small natural history museum, a hotel and restaurant, with a huge public park in the former hunting grounds.