Monday, May 22, 2017

The Meeting of David and Abigail

The Meeting of David and Abigail
Peter Paul Rubens 1577 – 1640
oil on panel (45 × 68 cm) — c. 1630
Samuel 25:24 - And fell at his feet, and said, Upon me, my lord, upon me let this iniquity be: and let thine handmaid, I pray thee, speak in thine audience, and hear the words of thine handmaid.

David had fled for king Saul and is hiding in the mountains near the Dead Sea. He and his men need provisions. David sends ten men to Nabal, a rich farmer whose herds graze in the area. They kindly ask Nabal whether he could provide some food for David's small army. Nabal curtly refuses and offends David. When the men return empty handed and tell of their meeting with Nabal, David sets of in anger and decides to annihilate Nabal and his people.

One of Nabal's assistants warns Abigail, Nabal's wise and attractive wife. Without hesitation she gathers all sorts of food and sets out towards David. When they meet, David is impressed by her action and appearance. He accepts her plea and lets the matter rest.

When Nabal hears of his wife's actions, he dies within ten days. Abigail would later become one of David's many wive

Rubens had given attention to the story previously. His workshop produced an almost identical painting a few years before he made this panel. It is larger and painted on canvas. It is in the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles.
>>>>> David

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