About this artwork

This is the first of Dürer’s famous so-called ‘Master Prints’. He created two more, Saint Jerome in his Study and Melencolia I. The three engravings have similar dimensions and were executed in 1513-14 with refined technique. It was once thought that Dürer designed them as a set. However, in his Netherlands travel journal he always referred to them as single sheets, which makes it unlikely that Dürer himself regarded them as a set. The knight has been identified with numerous historic figures, amongst them Martin Luther and Pope Julius II, but it is most likely that he symbolises the Christian knight who is impenetrable in his armour to Death and the Devil besides him.