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Poorter, Willem de
David and the Crown of Saul
around 1645

This small painting by the Haarlem artist De Poorter is a study in conflicting emotions, as the Old Testament hero David receives the news that King Saul and his son Jonathan, David’s close friend, have died fighting against the Amalekites. David rends his garments in grief even as he prepares to accept leadership of the House of Judah. The lofty architectural setting, fine details, and intense atmosphere recall Rembrandt’s work of the 1630s, providing evidence that the master’s impact reached beyond Amsterdam.

 
Poorter, Willem de
Haarlem, Netherlands 1608–Haarlem, Netherlands after 1648
David and the Crown of Saul
around 1645
Oil on panel
58.4 x 46.9 cm
Gift of Alfred and Isabel Bader, 2013
56-003.27

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