The Adoration of the Shepherds: with the Lamp

Rembrandt Van Rijn
The Adoration of the Shepherds: with the Lamp
c. 1654

An original Rembrandt Van Rijn etching.

c. 1654

Original etching

Signed in the plate lower left Rembrandt f.

Biörklund’s second state (of 2); Usticke’s second state (of 3); White and Boon’s second state (of 2). A good, dark 18th century impression with strong contrasts on cream laid paper.

Catalog: Bartsch 45; Biörklund 54-1; Hollstein (White and Boon) 45.

"And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, Let us now go even into Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord has made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found Mary and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger" (Luke 2:15-16)

This etching belongs to a loose cycle of etchings illustrating scenes from the childhood of Christ (B.45,47,55,60,63,64). The sizes of the prints in this cycle are not perfectly uniform, but they form a stylistic and thematic unit. In contrast to earlier opinion on the subject, it can be shown that these later Bible illustrations also follow scripture and iconographical tradition fairly faithfully. Rembrandt’s compositions stress the intimacy and simplicity of the events. The sober directness of the technique employed complements this approach perfectly