The J. Paul Getty Museum

The Mocking of Christ

Object Details


The Mocking of Christ


Unknown maker, Rembrandt Pupil, active 1650s




about 1650–1655


Pen and brown ink

Object Number:



18.1 × 24.6 cm (7 1/8 × 9 11/16 in.)

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Object Description

While Christ sits humbly on a platform, wearing the punishing crown of thorns and a borrowed robe, a soldier mocks him by kneeling in salute, saying, "Hail, King of the Jews!" Other soldiers look on, more concerned with their own conversation, perhaps deciding how to orchestrate Christ's imminent crucifixion.

A pupil of Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn first outlined this composition in a pale ink, then went over it in a darker ink to correct and emphasize parts of the group on the left. Although Mark's Gospel set the scene in the courtyard of the governor's headquarters, the artist purposefully left much of the page blank, isolating the figures in a void and forcing the psychological meaning and dramatic interplay among the participants to dominate. The large group at the left sets apart, both emotionally and in space, the resigned Christ and the soldier who taunts him.

17th Century Dutch Drawings (July 21 to October 4, 1992)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu), July 21 to October 4, 1992
Dutch Drawings of the Golden Age (May 28 to August 25, 2002)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), May 28 to August 25, 2002
Drawings by Rembrandt and His Pupils: Telling the Difference (December 8, 2009 to February 28, 2010)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), December 8, 2009 to February 28, 2010