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This is an illustration to chapter 42, verses 12-13 of the Book of Job. The main title comes from the opening of verse 12. The moral of the whole series of Blake's illustrations is set out in the inscription on the altar in the bottom margin. This is an adaptation of words from verse 6, chapter 11, of St. Paul's Epistle to the Hebrews. The composition is a counterpart to the first of Blake's Job engravings which is also shown here. In that illustration the musical instruments hang unused in a tree. Here they are being played in praise of God. In the first print the sun is setting, whereas here it is rising, a powerful symbol of redemption.

August 2004