Weeping of Jeremiah

Marc Chagall, Weeping of Jeremiah (detail), 1956. Lithograph, Musée national Marc Chagall, Nice, France.

Marc Chagall (1887–1985), the acclaimed Jewish artist, was born in Russia but moved to France in 1910. While in Paris he received a commission to illustrate the Hebrew Bible. He started the project in France but completed the series of 105 lithographs in Palestine. During his travels he became completely absorbed in the history of the Jewish people. While Chagall was working on the series, the Third Reich was rising to power in Germany. Although the Germans had once praised his work, the Nazis classified his art as degenerate. In this illustration, the prophet Jeremiah holds fast the Torah scroll, mourning the loss of Jews during the Holocaust and oblivious to the people around him.  

jeremiah-arts-chagall

A West Semitic language, in which most of the Hebrew Bible is written except for parts of Daniel and Ezra. Hebrew is regarded as the spoken language of ancient Israel but is largely replaced by Aramaic in the Persian period.

Another name often used for the area of Israel and Judah, derived from the Latin term for the Roman province of Palaestina; ultimately, the name derives from the name of the Philistine people.

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