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Nogmaals Pieter Bruegels Nestrover

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image of Oud Holland - Quarterly for Dutch Art History

In The Bird Nester Bruegel combines two proverbs whose respective English translations are: 'He who knows where the nest is, knows it; he who robs it, has it' and 'He who falls from the edge of the ditch into it', which also call transiency and death to mind. The composition of the painting and the symbolic significance of all the carefully chosen elements are bound to have reminded the educated contemporary beholder of the inevitability of death. Every detail in the picture conveys the same message. No more conclusive explanation than that of a memento mori has ever been offered for this mysterious painting.

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/content/journals/10.1163/187501799x00337
1999-01-01
2016-12-07

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