Siege of Bethulia
18.3 cm x 35.7 cm (7 3/16 in. x 14 1/16 in.)
(Nuremberg, circa 1491 - 1542, Nuremberg)
Medium and Support:
Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, The Leo Steinberg Collection, 2002
This single-leaf woodcut is developed in an unadorned, expository style that lies between more deliberately artistic and popular modes. In a sequence of vignettes, it relates the story of Judith, the heroine of the Apocrypha who rescued the Hebrew city of Bethulia from siege by the Assyrians by seducing and beheading their general, Holofernes. At the same time, the panoramic setting and many motifs refer to the frequent woodcuts of contemporary battles, like Schön’s own Seige of Münster. Schön was a prolific designer of woodcut illustrations and broadsides in Nuremberg.