Death suddenly attacks a couple of lovers in the midst of a peaceful, classic city architecture. The dramatic escape attempt made by the young woman in violent movement is of Italian character; the nightmarish drastic force with which death attacks its victims is more in keeping with Northern traditions. But this sheet is also remarkable for technical reasons. Only three years earlier, in 1507, the Dutch wood engraver Jost de Negker had invented the chiaroscuro (Clair-obscur or Chiaroscuro). By printing several differently coloured "Holzstocke" (printing plates of the woodcut) in a certain order on top of each other, until then unknown painterly effects could be achieved. This process required very precise planning and an extremely careful execution. Hans Burgkmair from Augsburg, whose graphic work consists almost exclusively of woodcuts, worked with the chiaroscuro technique as early as 1508. Burgkmair himself had executed the drawings for "Lovers Surprised by Death", Jost de Negker cut the woodblocks.