Peter Paul Rubens
The Massacre of the Innocents, um 1638
Eichenholz, 198,5 x 302,2 cm
1706 in der Kurfürstlichen Galerie nachweisbar
Inv. Nr. 572
The Massacre of the Innocents
The awful massacre as related in Matthew (2, 16-18) is one of Rubens late, compositional masterpieces. The action revolves around three main groups, in all of which the same interplay of murder and despair, ruthless killing and furious, yet hopeless resistance takes place. The groups on the right and the left function as self-contained units. The middle group directs the eye - from the figure who holds up a blood-stained cloth to heaven, a monument to maternal anguish - up to the palace, where Herod awaits information about the accomplishment of the deed.