The Destruction of Pharoah's Army and Other Scenes within a Cartouche
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Étienne Delaune
French, about 1560 - 1570
Pen and black and brown ink and gray wash on vellum
10 3/16 x 12 3/16 in.

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Beneath a seated personification of Faith, each of these images focuses on a specific act of faith from the Old Testament. In the center, Moses causes the waters of the Red Sea to drown Pharoah's army. In the two side ovals, Joshua and the Israelites bring down the walls of Jericho, and Gideon chooses his soldiers according to whether they lapped water instead of kneeling down to drink. At the bottom, Jacob sacrifices his son Isaac.

In minute detail Étienne Delaune delineated the strapwork cartouche with its ornamental putti, the grotesque masks at the lower corners, and the bunches of fruit. He carefully applied areas of wash to give the blank plaques and curling strapwork the impression of three-dimensionality. He probably intended the drawing as a design for a wall decoration. The elaborate frame of the drawing would have been sculpted in stucco relief, and the various empty spaces would have contained inscriptions.