The Wallace Collection

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Noonday Rest: the Parable of the Tares
  • Adriaen van de Velde (1636 - 1672)
  • Noonday Rest: the Parable of the Tares
  • Netherlands
  • 1663
  • Painting
  • Oil on canvas laid on oak panel
  • Image size: 31 x 41.8 cm
  • Signature: 'A. v. velde.f 1663'
  • P199
  • East Galleries III
Commentary
History
Further Reading
  • Adriaen, the brother of Willem van de Velde the Younger, specialized in rural scenes. In this picture the sleeping figures and tiny sower silhouetted against the horizon recall the Parable of the Tares (Matthew XIII, 24-30), where: ‘The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.’ When the weeds grew the man refused to let his servants uproot them, for fear of also uprooting the wheat. The parable urges the need for spiritual vigilance and is given contemporary relevance through this everyday rural scene. This picture was purchased by the 4th Marquess of Hertford in 1867 at the Schönborn sale in Paris for the huge sum of 40,000 francs (about £1,600).