The Drunkenness of Noah
- c. 1483–1495
This print was removed from a copy of the Liber Chronicarum, which is more commonly known as the Nuremberg Chronicle after the city in which it was created in 1493. The subject comes from the Old Testament book of Genesis (9:21–23), which recounts an episode when Noah drinks too much wine and passes out naked in his tent. Upon finding him in this state, his son Ham mocks him while his other two sons, Shem and Japheth, cover his body with a garment. Here, the setting shifts from a tent to a vineyard, which symbolizes the cause of his drunken stupor. Using gestures, facial expressions, and the names of the protagonists, the printmakers masterfully evoke the narrative through minimal means. This image was originally placed at the bottom of the page, below a passage of text and an illustration of the family tree of Shem, who is often Noah’s first-mentioned son.
Nicole Myers, DMA label copy, 2018.
- World Digital Library
Explore a copy of the Nuremberg Chronicle from the Library of Congress's digital library.