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Description

Copperplate engraving.

Illustrated history of biblical events, with engravings by either Joseph Sebastian Klauber (1710? - 1768) or Johann Baptist Klauber (1712 – 1774) of Augsburg, Germany.

Both brothers studied in Prague, and together published Catholic works such as this. The brothers lived in Germany in the time of Johann Sebastian Bach. The elder brother Joseph Sebastian was known for an engraved portrait of Frederick the Great, the king of Prussia who instigated the Seven Year’s War (1756- 1763).

Analysis

This opulent illustration is typical of the Rococo style of this era. The scene is depicted inside of an ornate frame with architectural details, eliciting more of a garden setting than the banks of the Jordan River. At the center, John, who stands with a banner and cross, pours water from a shell onto the head of Jesus. Jesus kneels on a rock. His hands are to his heart; he is not immersed in the water here. His clothing is draped around his left shoulder, and held from the back by two hovering angels. Above them the white dove flies down toward Jesus, emitting a ray of light from his beak. Jesus has a radiant halo. At the top of the frame, God is depicted with a triangular halo, a motif used to refer to the Trinity.



Rights

Artwork in the public domain

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