28 December 2012

Holy Innocents

This fascinating (even though somewhat eccentric) painting is by William Holman Hunt, who began this work in the 1870's while visiting the Holy Land. It was completed in 1883-4. Depicting the Holy Family fleeing to Egypt, it shows the Holy Innocents accompanying them in spirit, joining what looks like a procession to Egypt at the very moments of their deaths. Hunt placed what he called "airy globes" at the feet of the children, representing "the streams of eternal life."