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Between and Mortarboard


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Battle of Samson Against the Philistines

Accession Number
1982/1.262

Title
Battle of Samson Against the Philistines

Artist(s)
Alexandre-Gabriel Decamps

Artist Nationality
French (culture or style)

Object Creation Date
circa 1839

Medium & Support
black chalk and watercolor heightened with white on tan wove paper, mounted on

Dimensions
87 13/16 in. x 125 3/16 in. ( 223 cm x 318 cm )

Credit Line
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Charles H. Sawyer through the Friends of the Museum of Art

Subject matter
Derived from the Old Testament story (Book of Judges) of Samson single-handedly (albeit with the help of God) defeating the Philistines in battle, Decamps depicts a moment of that battle. Decamps visited Italy in 1835 and proceeded to paint many biblical scenes upon his return to France. Thanks to travels in Asia Minor and North Africa in 1828, he was able to set these religious works in realistic Near Eastern settings. Decamps was one of three painters given a retrospective in the Universal Exposition of 1855 in Paris, along with Ingres and Delacroix.

Physical Description
This drawing is done in black chalk with white color highlights against a tan background. It shows an expansive landscape with craggy mountains and a wide sky with swirling cloud formations. In the center foreground area there is a an army of men facing a figure with long dark hair. This man has his arms raised preparing to throw an object at the group. On the right, there is another group of men looking on from behind a tree.

Primary Object Classification
Drawing

Primary Object Type
preparatory drawing

Collection Area
Western

Rights
If you are interested in using an image for a publication, please visit http://umma.umich.edu/request-image for more information and to fill out the online Image Rights and Reproductions Request Form.

Keywords
Bible
War
battle
mountains
trees

3 Related Resources

Death and Dying
(Part of 8 Learning Collections)
Hebrew Bible / Old Testament
(Part of 4 Learning Collections)
Combat, Battle, Warfare
(Part of 3 Learning Collections)

& Author Notes

All Rights Reserved

On display