(b. ca. 1540, Mechelen, d. ca. 1590, Köln)

The Calvinist Iconoclastic Riot of August 20, 1566

Copper engraving, 186 x 276 mm
British Museum, London

Hogenburg's engraving illustrates a history book (De Leone Belgico by Michael Aitsinger, 1588) published more than twenty years after the devastating iconoclastic attack in the Netherlands. It shows not just the crude attacks on the furnishings of churches, during which sculptures were smashed with cudgels and axes, or torn down from great heights; but also the negative consequences of the riots, such as the plundering being carried out by the man on the right. The artist has clearly indicated the shameful nature of the iconoclastic rioting by showing it happening under the cloak of darkness - the man on the right is carrying a candle.