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Feast & Fast

The Art of Food in Europe, 1500 – 1800

222: Nine tiles, each depicting a Biblical scene connected to food

Top row, left to right:

  1. The Creation of Adam (C.2804.1-1928)
  2. The Fall (C.2804.2-1928)
  3. The Expulsion from Eden (C.2804.3-1928)

Middle row, left to right:

  1. Cain killing Abel (C.2804.4-1928)
  2. Jacob giving Esau the Mess of Potage (C.2804.9-1928)
  3. The Sons of Job Feasting (C.2804.13-1928)

Bottom row, left to right:

  1. The Adoration of the Shepherds (C.2804.20-1928)
  2. The Wedding at Cana (C.2804.52-1928)
  3. The Temptation of Christ in the Wilderness (C.2804.47-1928)

Delft, Netherlands, 18th century

Tin-glazed earthenware

Dr J.W.L. Glaisher Bequest

Tin-glazed tiles with Biblical scenes were widely produced in the Protestant world to decorate chimneys and hearths. These 9 Delftware examples depict episodes of food consumption or preparation from both the Old and New Testament, including the Wedding at Cana (bottom row, middle), when Christ turned water into wine to demonstrate God’s mercy, and The Temptation of Christ (bottom row, right) when Christ, famished after 40 days of fasting, refused Satan’s temptation to turn stones into bread. Each scene includes the relevant Biblical verse, so these tiles were instructive as well as decorative, teaching the viewer about good and bad food choices, which would have been particularly relevant in kitchens or dining rooms.</p>

Nine tiles, each depicting a Biblical scene connected to food
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