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The Death of the VirginEnlarge image

The Death of the Virgin, 1639

Rembrandt van Rijn
Dutch, 1606 - 1669
etching and drypoint on laid paper
42 x 32.2 cm; plate: 41.1 x 31.2 cm
Purchased 1957
National Gallery of Canada (no. 6904)

This dramatic and monumental image was produced during Rembrandt's most outwardly Baroque period, when he seems to have felt the need to compete with the reputation of Rubens. At the same time, the realistic detail of a doctor checking the Virgin for a pulse is typical of the artist=s desire to undermine the more heroic aspects of traditional interpretations of religious themes.

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