17th century Flemish and Dutch paintings
Battle scenes and military subjects
Biblical, mythological and allegorical scenes
Landscapes and maritime subjects
Portraits, genre and exterior scenes
Still lifes and animal scenes
A landscape with numerous animals, Cain slaying Abel in the background
Oil on panel : 43,3 X 72,2 cm
Frame : 55,8 X 83,8 cm
Our painting is known at the RKD, The Hague, Nr. 0000040595, as by Roelant Savery
I am currently documenting this painting.
About Cain and Abel
Cain and Abel were sons of Adam and Eve.
The first-born Cain was a farmer, Abel was a shepherd.
Both brothers made sacrifices to God, each of his own produce: Cain offered part of his harvest, Abel offered a firstling of his animals. For an unexplained reason God accepted Abel’s offering, as the smoke of his sacrificial fire went up to the sky, but not that of Cain. Abel, who must have been jealous, killed his brother. God punished him to a life of wandering.
In the background of our painting we see four human figures:
- right of the centre Abel is kneeling in front of his fire, while left of him Savery painted the unsuccessful Cain.
- in the left background one sees the First Murder: Cain is slaying his brother Abel.