The Feast of Dives

Object Details


The Feast of Dives


Master of James IV of Scotland (Flemish, before 1465 - about 1541)




Bruges, Belgium; Ghent, Belgium (Place Created)


about 1510–1520


Tempera colors, gold, and ink on parchment

Object Number:

Ms. Ludwig IX 18, fol. 21v


Leaf: 23.2 × 16.7 cm (9 1/8 × 6 9/16 in.)

See more

See less

A series of wonderfully vivid images tells the Biblical parable of Lazarus and the rich man. Splendidly dressed in furs and jewels that indicate his great wealth, the rich man, called Dives, sits at a table crowded with dishes. His double chin and girth are clear signs of his over-indulgent habits. The artist cleverly constructed the miniature to show simultaneously the interior and the exterior of the house. Outside the frame, Lazarus approaches the house to beg for some scraps from the rich man's table. Dives refuses the humble request, while his dogs race to lick the sores on Lazarus's pathetic body. Below, Lazarus has died from hunger and exposure, but two angels greet his soul and enfold it in a white cloth. The facing image finishes the story.

Related Works
The Art of Giving in the Middle Ages (November 21, 2000 to February 4, 2001)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), November 21, 2000 to February 4, 2001
Heaven, Hell, and Dying Well: Images of Death in the Middle Ages (May 29 to August 12, 2012)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), May 29 to August 12, 2012
Eat, Drink, and Be Merry: Food in the Middle Ages and Renaissance (October 13, 2015 to January 3, 2016)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), October 13, 2015 to January 3, 2016
Related Media
  • /
    Audio: Feast of Dives / Lazarus's Soul