Rembrandt: The Biblical Etchings
    Footnotes
    Theme

    “Rembrandt: The Biblical Etchings,” Ensign, Oct. 2005, 36–39

    Rembrandt:

    The Biblical Etchings

    Born in 1606 in the Netherlands, Rembrandt van Rijn is regarded as one of the greatest of the Old Masters. His skill with oils is well known; however, it is in his etchings that we isolate his skills as a master draftsman. Rembrandt’s etchings reveal his understanding of the Bible, his faith in God, and his compassion for the human condition. Of his some 1,500 authenticated pieces, one-third are of Bible subjects. Portraying truth became his primary objective. He sought to portray the scriptures in all their depth, without relying on sectarian traditions.

    At his death in 1669, an inventory of his holdings was short. It included only one book—his well-worn Dutch Bible. On his easel stood an unfinished painting of a biblical scene, Simeon and the Christ Child in the Temple.

    The Church recently acquired 17 of Rembrandt’s 70 biblical etchings. Several are shown here. They are now featured together with many other Rembrandt etchings of the scriptures in an exhibit that will run through the end of December 2005 at the Museum of Church History and Art. To view the current exhibit online, visit www.lds.org/churchhistory/museum/exhibits/current.

    Self-Portrait

    Self-Portrait
    Leaning on a Stone Sill
    Facsimile, signed “Rembrandt f. 1639”
    Courtesy of Museum of Art, Brigham Young University

    Christ and the Woman of Samaria

    Christ and the Woman of Samaria
    See John 4:10, 14
    Signed “Rembrandt f. 1658”
    Actual size 5″ x 6.38″

    Christ Ministering

    Christ Ministering
    See Matt. 19:13–14
    Unsigned, about 1640–49
    Actual size 10.75″ x 15.3″

    Joseph Telling His Dreams

    Joseph Telling His Dreams
    See Gen. 37:5, 9–11
    Signed “Rembrandt f. 1638”
    Actual size 4.38″ x 3″

    Return of the Prodigal Son

    Return of the Prodigal Son
    See Luke 15:18–20
    Signed “Rembrandt f. 1636”Actual size 6.25″ x 5.38″

    Peter and John at the Temple Gate

    Peter and John at the Temple Gate
    See Acts 3:1–2
    Signed “Rembrandt f. 1659”
    Actual size 5.25″ x 8.38″

    Judas, Pharisees in the Temple

    Judas, Pharisees in the Temple
    See Matt. 27:3–5
    Signed “Rembrandt f. 1648”
    Actual size 9″ x 5.3″

    Presentation in the Temple

    Presentation in the Temple
    See Luke 2:27, 34
    Unsigned, about 1639
    Actual size 8.5″ x 11.38″

    All images courtesy of the Museum of Church History and Art, except as noted.