Eve Tempted by the Serpent thumbnail 1
Eve Tempted by the Serpent thumbnail 2
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Paintings, Room 82, The Edwin and Susan Davies Galleries

Eve Tempted by the Serpent

Tempera Painting
1799-1800 (painted)
Artist/Maker
Place of origin

Blake drew his inspiration for this scene from the book of Genesis in the Old Testament and from John Milton's epic poem 'Paradise Lost' (1667). Blake often experimented with painting techniques, and here the surface has flaked badly because of the poor adhesion between a glue-based paint and the copper support he used.


Object details
Categories
Object type
Materials and techniques
tempera and gold on copper
Brief description
Tempera on copper entitled 'Eve Tempted by the Serpent' by William Blake. Great Britain, ca. 1799-1800.
Physical description
Landscape format painting with the predominant colours being yellow and blue, depicting a naked woman with a serpent behind her
Dimensions
  • Estimate height: 27.3cm
  • Estimate width: 38.5cm
Dimensions taken from departmental object file
Style
Marks and inscriptions
'WB inv' (Signed in monogram, lower left)
Object history
Purchased, 1953
Subjects depicted
Literary referencethe Bible
Summary
Blake drew his inspiration for this scene from the book of Genesis in the Old Testament and from John Milton's epic poem 'Paradise Lost' (1667). Blake often experimented with painting techniques, and here the surface has flaked badly because of the poor adhesion between a glue-based paint and the copper support he used.
Bibliographic references
  • Butlin, Martin. The paintings and drawings of William Blake. Published for the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art by Yale University Press, New Haven; London, 1981, p. 318, cat. no. 379
  • W. M. Rossetti, "Annotated Catalogue" in A. Gilchrist Life of William Blake, 2 vols, 1863, II, p.223, no.107.
  • W. M. Rossetti, "Annotated Catalogue" in A. Gilchrist Life of William Blake, 2 vols, 1880 (enlarged edition), II, p.235, no.130.
  • G.keynes, William Blake's Illustrations to the Bible, 1957, p.2, no.10 repr.
  • Bindman, D., Blake as an Artist 1977, p.119,126, 128 repr. pl.99.
  • Victoria and Albert Museum Department of Prints and Drawings and Department of Paintings Accessions 1953 London: HMSO, 1963
  • Catalogue of loan collection of pictures by French and British artists of the 18th century, Glasgow : The Museum, 1902118
  • A catalogue of frescoes, prints, & drawings by William Blake, London : Carfax & Co., Ltd., 1906no.1
Collection
Accession number
P.28-1953

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Record createdMay 13, 2003
Record URL
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