About this artwork

Here Durer illustrated a story from a popular collection ‘The Book of the Knight of the Tower’, which was written as a manual for decent conduct for young ladies. According to the story, the wife of the cook ate an eel meant for a special guest, but rather than admitting it to her husband, she told a lie. A magpie revealed the woman’s secret to her husband, and was punished by having its feathers plucked by the vengeful wife. The cook, represented with all the attributes of his trade: knife, pan and a spoon, is listening to the bird with a growing expression of surprise on his face, whereas his wife turns her gaze to the side in anticipation, which verges on resolute.

Updated before 2020

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Albrecht Dürer

Albrecht Dürer