The Sacrifice of Abraham, Cornelis de Vos, Jan Wildens
Cornelis de Vos and Jan Wildens
The Sacrifice of Abraham
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Cornelis de Vos
Jan Wildens

The Sacrifice of Abraham, ca. 1631 – 1635


Dimensions
222.0 x 178.0 cm
Physical Description
Oil on canvas
Inventory Number
2087
Acquisition
Acquired in 1961 as a gift from Degussa AG, Property of Städelscher Museums-Verein e.V.
Status
On display

Texts

About the Work

To test his unconditional loyalty, God has commanded Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac. But an angel intervenes before the patriarch can harm the boy, who is half lying across a sacrificial altar. A ram appears in the thorny thicket to give its life instead. As the crossed logs indicate, the happily averted sacrifice of Isaac was understood as a precognition of the death of Christ. This painting by Cornelis de Vos and Jan Wildens (who was responsible for the background landscape) may thus well have originally been intended to serve as an altarpiece in a church.

About the Donation

Degussa was founded in Frankfurt am Main on 28 January 1873 as a gold and silver refining company: Deutsche Gold- und Silber-Scheideanstalt, vormals Roessler AG. Nowadays, as Evonik Degussa GmbH, it is a specialised chemical concern based in Essen. The name Degussa originated as an acronym derived from ‘Deutsche Gold- und Silberscheideanstalt’. When this gift was made in 1961, the firm – still based in Frankfurt at the time – was already one of the most successful chemical companies in Germany.

Work Data

Basic Information

Title
The Sacrifice of Abraham
Painter
Period Produced
School
Object Type
Physical Description
Oil on canvas
Material
Technique

Property and Acquisition

Institution
Administration
Collection
Picture Copyright
© Städel Museum
Acquisition
Acquired in 1961 as a gift from Degussa AG, Property of Städelscher Museums-Verein e.V.

Work Content

Motifs and References

Genre
Main Motif
Persons Shown
Associated Persons and Institutions
Illustrated Passage
  • Bibel, Altes Testament, Genesis 22,1-18

Iconclass

Primary
  • 71C131311 when Abraham has his hand raised to kill Isaac, an angel restrains Abraham's hand
Secondary

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  • Atmosphere
  • Emotion
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Last import

06.08.2019