BRAY, Salomon de
(b. 1597, Amsterdam, d. 1664, Haarlem)

Eliezer and Rebecca

Pen in brown, brush, grey wash, 86 x 145 mm
Staatliche Graphische Sammlung, Munich

Salamon de Bray's painting of Eliezer and Rebecca is related to two, precisely dated preparatory drawings from November 1659. The first sketch of 9 November 1559 shows Rebecca and Eliezer standing at a well on the slope of a mountain, as we see them in the final painting. However, the positions of the camels and the landscape are reversed as compared with the painting. The drawing suggests that De Bray initially intended to illustrate a slightly later episode from the narrative, as Eliezer appears to be holding jewellery in his hand and Rebecca points to the city as if showing him where she lives.