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The Seven Deadly Sins and the Four Last Things (tabletop)

Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain

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Hieronymus Bosch, 1485

Northern Renaissance
oil
panel
religious painting

Unlike many of his works, in which Bosch used intricate levels of symbolism to represent his meaning, The Seven Deadly Sins and the Four Last Things literally represents the levels of sin, the punishments, and the eye of God watching over everything. Interestingly, even at his most literal, Bosch is still able to include a vast amount of symbolism into his descriptions of each of the seven deadly sins. Those sent to hell for the sin of greed are boiled in pots of gold, and in the sin of pride a demon holds a mirror up to a prideful woman. The series of paintings is much more than a description of each sin and its punishment, as a whole it represents a warning to those who would engage in sin, and acts as a deterrent to evil doing.

image of The Seven Deadly Sins and the Four Last Things (tabletop)