Rudolf Feyerabend

One gets the best overview of Basel's dance of death from Feyerabend's watercolour.

Feyerabend painted his watercolour in 1806 - the year after the mural had been demolished. Feyerabend therefore had to seek support in Chovin's(1) copperplates, and he cannot be considered a true eyewitness.

Rudolf Feyerabend, Basel's dance of death
Rudolf Feyerabend, Basel's dance of death
Feyerabend deviates much from Merian and Chovin when it comes to Adam & Eve.
Feyerabend, Adam and Eve

On the other hand one must assume that Feyerabend still had the dance of death fresh in memory, and that he has made sure, for instance, to get the figures in the proper sequence. Therefore Feyerabend's watercolour is the quickest way to get an overview.

Notice that at the end of the dance - between the peasant and the painter - there's a picture of Adam and Eve with unicorn and eagle, which takes up the exact same space as 2 dance couples. Some scholars assume that this is where the child and Turk have been, and that they have both been replaced by the Paradise-scene after Emanuel Bock's restoration 1614-1616.

The painter and his wife and son had disappeared long before 1806, so Feyerabend had to copy Chovin's copperplates, and he has placed them in the same inverted sequence that ultimately goes back to Merian.


Feyerabend
Feyerabend 1806: Feyerabend
Preacher
Feyerabend 1806: Preacher
Ossuary
Feyerabend 1806: Ossuary
Pope
Feyerabend 1806: Pope
Emperor
Feyerabend 1806: Emperor
Empress
Feyerabend 1806: Empress
King
Feyerabend 1806: King
Queen
Feyerabend 1806: Queen
Cardinal
Feyerabend 1806: Cardinal
Bishop
Feyerabend 1806: Bishop
Duke
Feyerabend 1806: Duke
Duchess
Feyerabend 1806: Duchess
Count
Feyerabend 1806: Count
Abbot
Feyerabend 1806: Abbot
Knight
Feyerabend 1806: Knight
Lawyer
Feyerabend 1806: Lawyer
Councilman
Feyerabend 1806: Councilman
Canon
Feyerabend 1806: Canon
Physician
Feyerabend 1806: Physician
Nobleman
Feyerabend 1806: Nobleman
Noblewoman
Feyerabend 1806: Noblewoman
Merchant
Feyerabend 1806: Merchant
Abbess
Feyerabend 1806: Abbess
Cripple
Feyerabend 1806: Cripple
Hermit
Feyerabend 1806: Hermit
Young man
Feyerabend 1806: Young man
Usurer
Feyerabend 1806: Usurer
Young woman
Feyerabend 1806: Young woman
Musician
Feyerabend 1806: Musician
Herald
Feyerabend 1806: Herald
Mayor
Feyerabend 1806: Mayor
Executioner
Feyerabend 1806: Executioner
Fool
Feyerabend 1806: Fool
Peddler
Feyerabend 1806: Peddler
Blind
Feyerabend 1806: Blind
Jew
Feyerabend 1806: Jew
Heathen
Feyerabend 1806: Heathen
Heatheness
Feyerabend 1806: Heatheness
Cook
Feyerabend 1806: Cook
Peasant
Feyerabend 1806: Peasant
Painter
Feyerabend 1806: Painter
Mother
Feyerabend 1806: Mother
Adam and Eve
Feyerabend 1806: Adam and Eve
Church
Feyerabend 1806: Church
Destruction
Feyerabend 1806: Destruction
Destruction
Feyerabend 1806: Destruction
Abbess
Feyerabend 1806: Abbess

In this Section about Basel

Footnotes: (1)

It is sometimes stated that Feyerabend has used Merian's prints, but one of the differences between Merian and Chovin is that Chovin has added trees and buildings in the background of the scenes following the taste of the Baroque period.

Feyerabend includes these new details.


Up to Basel's dance of death