The Massacre of the Innocents by Pieter Bruegel the Elder was created in 1567. The painting is in Royal Collection, London. The size of the work is 109,2 x 158,1 cm and is made of oil on wood panel.
According to St Matthew’s Gospel, after hearing from the wise men of the birth of Jesus, King Herod ordered that all children in Bethlehem under the age of two be murdered. Bruegel set the story as a contemporary Flemish atrocity so that the soldiers wear the distinctive clothing of the Spanish army and their German mercenaries. The artist also drew upon his experience of the exceptionally severe winter of 1564-5 to describe a village covered in snow, with icicles hanging from the rooftops and the pond in the foreground thickly frozen over. (Read more in Royal Collection)
About the Artist: Dutch painter Pieter Bruegel the Elder was born in Breda. Bruegel was the most significant artist of Dutch and Flemish Renaissance painting, a painter and printmaker, known for his landscapes and peasant scenes; he was a pioneer in making both types of subject the focus in large paintings. Between 1545 and 1550 he was a pupil of Pieter Coecke. In 1551 Bruegel became a free master in the Guild of Saint Luke of Antwerp… Read more
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