This watercolour illustrates verses from
St Matthew's Gospel. Christ prays for spiritual strength and guidance in the Garden of Gethsemane, knowing that
he will soon be betrayed by one of his
own disciples. Judas arrives with 'a great multitude with swords and staves'
to arrest him. He kisses Christ as a signal that he is the one to be seized. The rest
of the disciples look on in horror.
This is one of more than eighty watercolours of biblical subjects which Blake made for his patron, Thomas Butts, between 1800 and 1805.
Gallery label, August 2004
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