Art/ Collection/ Art Object

The Blindness of Tobit

Artist:
Rembrandt (Rembrandt van Rijn) (Dutch, Leiden 1606–1669 Amsterdam)
Date:
1651
Medium:
Etching with touches of drypoint; first of two states
Dimensions:
Sheet (Trimmed): 6 5/16 × 5 3/16 in. (16.1 × 13.2 cm)
Classification:
Prints
Credit Line:
Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1937
Accession Number:
37.3.13
Not on view
Rembrandt executed a number of paintings, drawings, and etchings related to the story of Tobit, revealing a particular affinity for this apocryphal book of the Hebrew Bible. In this etching, the artist depicts the moment when the old and blind Tobit turns to welcome home his long-expected son (Tobit 11:5–11). In haste, Tobit knocks over a spinning wheel and runs into the doorpost, with the dog of his approaching son Tobias nestled into his garment. Details such as the dog, the wheel, and the fish hanging from the hearth are not referenced in these verses of the story but give dimension to Tobit’s impoverished life. Masterfully etched in a lively, open style, this scene demonstrates Rembrandt’s dexterity with an etching needle.
Inscription: Inascribed in plate on lower center: "Rembrandt f. 1651."
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," October 25, 1993 - February 14, 1994.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," May 9–August 7, 2017.

Hind.252; B.42-i; NH(Rembrandt).II.205.265 i
F. W. H. Hollstein Dutch & Flemish Etchings, Engravings, and Woodcuts, 1450-1700. 2008, cat. no. 265, p. 205, ill.

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