About this artwork

Flames and trumpeting angels frame the statuesque figure of God who is seen from behind. Towering over the kneeling Moses, God raises his arms and prepares to inscribe the Ten Commandments on the stone tablets before him. The subject was inspired by an episode in the Old Testament Book of Deuteronomy. This is one of eighty watercolours of Biblical subjects Blake produced between 1800 and 1809. They were made for Thomas Butts, a military clerk, who shared his philosophies and whose son Blake taught to engrave.

Updated before 2020

  • artist:
  • title:
    God Writing upon the Tables of the Covenant
  • date created:
    About 1805
  • materials:
    Pen and ink and watercolour over pencil on paper
  • measurements:
    41.90 x 34.20 cm
  • object type:
  • credit line:
    William Finlay Watson Bequest 1881
  • accession number:
    D 2281
  • gallery:
    View by Appointment
  • depicted:
    God
  • subject:
  • glossary:
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William Blake

William Blake