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The Conflict between Satan and Death, from John Milton's Paradise Lost, Book 2, line 727

1824-1825
19th century
27.7 cm x 37.3 cm (10 7/8 in. x 14 11/16 in.)

John Martin (Haydon Bridge (Northumberland), England, 1789 - 1854, Douglas (Isle of Man)) Primary

Object Type: print
Artist Nationality: Europe, English
Medium and Support: Mezzotint and drypoint
Credit Line: Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, Purchase through the generosity of the Still Water Foundation, 1996
Accession Number: 1996.261

From the gates of hell Sin leaps up to stop these two demons—Satan and Death—from annihilating each other. Satan, with his bat-like wings, stands poised to thrust his spear, while a toad-like Death emerges shrouded in black fog. Martin hints at Death’s form, burnishing out only the whites of its eyes, unable or unwilling to define it for us.

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