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David Playing the Harp before Saul

1555
(Netherlandish, 1519–1570)
Sheet: 33.4 x 47.9 cm (13 1/8 x 18 7/8 in.)
Catalogue raisonné: Hollstein I, Strauss 101, Bialler 3a/e
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Location: not on view

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Description

The soothing effect of David’s music upon the melancholic King Saul, as relayed in the Old Testament and depicted here by Frans Floris, is the earliest visual evidence of the therapeutic use of music. Floris’s woodcut would have had contemporary relevance in its affirmation of Martin Luther’s belief that music-a divine power that creates order—had been made by God to combat the destructive power of evil.
David Playing the Harp before Saul

David Playing the Harp before Saul

1555

Frans Floris

(Netherlandish, 1519–1570)
Netherlands, 16th century

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