Portrait of Erasmus of Rotterdam by Albrecht Durer

Portrait of Erasmus of Rotterdam by Albrecht Durer

In a series of portraits of the 1520s Dürer recreated the type of man of the Renaissance era, imbued with a proud consciousness of the self-worth of one’s self, charged with intense spiritual energy and practical purposefulness. The most significant of them was the “Portrait of Erasmus of Rotterdam” – the great humanist of the Renaissance.

In this portrait, the thinker is depicted in the traditional reversal – three quarters. The thinker is shown at work, around the book, he is completely lost in thought, his lips touched the ironic smile of the author of “The Praise of Foolishness.”

Erasmus himself looked at this his work, as a literary trifle. But his place in the history of Erasmus Rotterdam is due precisely this trifle. Most of his scientific work, having served in his time, was long ago busted in the book depository, under a thick layer of age-old dust, while the “Praise of Stupidity” is still read in translations into all European languages, including Russian. Thousands of educated people throughout the world continue to be read by this ingenious joke of the witty of the learned and learned of the witty people that only the history of world literature knows.

Erasmus of Rotterdam highly valued the work of Albrecht Durer. “… What he can not express in one color – that is, with black strokes, – the great thinker wrote about the artist, – Shadow, brilliance, protrusions and indentations, due to which each thing appears before the eyes of the viewer not only by its side. He grasps the correct proportions and their mutual correspondence, What he does not even represent, that can not be depicted: fire, rays, thunder, lightning, lightning, mist, all sensations, feelings, finally, the whole human soul, manifested in body movements, almost the voice itself. “

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