00:00
/
00:00
Elsheimer, Adam (attributed to)
Tobias and the Angel Tobias and the Angel
n.d. n.d.

Tobias and the angel is a subject that the German artist Adam Elsheimer depicted in a variety of media. The current print most closely resembles a gouache in the Staatliche Museen in Berlin that was likely made as a preparatory work for Elsheimer’s Tobias and the Angel (the small Tobias) held in the Historisches Museum in Frankfurt. In contrast to the painting, which shows details of a lush, wooded landscape, the present print directly zooms in on Tobias and the angel. The setting is completely reduced to the immediate surrounding of the figures. In the print, Tobias’s dog is absent from the composition. Moreover, unlike in the painting and the gouache, Tobias and the angel have switched spots. Here, Tobias is nearest to the viewer, while the angel is further back. The two protagonists also appear closer in age in this work, whereas in Elsheimer’s painting, Raphael, as the guiding messenger, sent from heaven, is portrayed as the more mature figure. Tobias holds a staff against his shoulder, from which hangs a fish, identifying this moment as belonging to chapter six of the Book of Tobit when the voyageurs are on their way to Ecbatana.

 
Elsheimer, Adam (attributed to)
Frankfurt, Germany 1578–Rome, Italy 1610 Frankfurt, Germany 1578–Rome, Italy 1610
Tobias and the Angel Tobias and the Angel
n.d. n.d.
Etching and engraving, state 1 of 2 Etching and engraving, state 1 of 2
overall: 16.2 cm x 10.4 cm
Purchase, Bader Acquisition Fund, 2010 Purchase, Bader Acquisition Fund, 2010
53-046.026

Subscribe to our “This Week at Agnes” e-newsletter to stay abreast of events, news and opportunities at the art museum.