Christ Driving the Traders from the Temple

oil and tempera on panel (102 × 155 cm) — after 1569 Museum Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen

This work is linked to Luke 19:45

Rate this work of art:

  [9 votes]

When Jesus arrived in Jerusalem he found the Temple crowded with people who didn't belong there, such as traders and money-changers. With a whip he drove them out, making them take their tables too.

From the inside of the Temple Aaron and Moses seem to look on. They symbolize the Ark of the Covenant, the wooden chest containing the two stone tablets of the Ten Commandments.

According to this painting the traders also sold cattle in the Temple - even (non-kosher) pigs. Luke's gospel only mentions pigeons.

In front of the Temple beggars wait for passers-by. A man without feet crawls away.

The scene to the left seems to show a quack at work. In the audience one person puts their hand in another one's purse.

From the 1930's on the panel was commonly attributed to Pieter Bruegel the Elder. The composition of the groups of people however shows more similarity to the work of Hieronymus Bosch. Recent research into the panel itself shows it cannot have been made before 1562. It is therefore now attributed to an "unknown Netherlandish artist in a manner of Hieronymus Bosch (1450-1516) and Pieter Bruegel the Elder (1526/30-1569)".

There are three paintings that are similar to this panel: in Glasgow, Tallinn and in a private collection.

Show page metadata