Babylonian Captivity (1838) by Eugene Delacroix

Babylonian Captivity - Eugene Delacroix - 1838

Artwork Information

TitleBabylonian Captivity
ArtistEugene Delacroix
Dimensions221 x 292 cm
Art MovementRomanticism
Current LocationPalais Bourbon, Paris, France

About Babylonian Captivity

The artwork “Babylonian Captivity” by Eugene Delacroix was created in 1838 as an oil painting embodying the Romanticism movement. It measures 221 x 292 cm and falls within the genre of religious painting. The painting is housed at the Palais Bourbon in Paris, France.

In “Babylonian Captivity,” Eugene Delacroix portrays a group of individuals in various states of despair, which is indicative of the ordeal faced by the Jews during their captivity in Babylon, as recounted in the Bible. The composition is dynamic, with figures either reclined or sitting, showing expressions of sorrow and contemplation. The colors are rich and earthy, a characteristic element of Delacroix’s palette, aiming to evoke an emotional response in the viewer. A city is visible in the distance, possibly representing Babylon, while the figures in the foreground seem to be in a lush, though somber, outdoor setting, suggestive of their exile from their homeland. Sitting under the shade of trees, the figures are a mix of men, women, and children, each seemingly lost in their grief or thought, with one woman nursing a child. The attention to human emotion and the dramatic use of color are hallmarks of the Romanticism movement, which emphasized sentiment and the natural world over the rationalism of the Enlightenment era.

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