Willem Drost: Bathsheba with David’s Letter

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Bathsheba with David's Letter (Batsheba met de brief van koning David) 1654 painting by Willem Drost

Bathsheba with David's Letter (Bethsabée tenant la lettre du roi David), oil on canvas painting of 1654 by Willem Drost (1633-1659), 103 cm x 87 cm, Musée du Louvre, Paris

The oil painting titled ‘Bathsheba with David’s Letter’ by the Dutch Golden Age painter Willem Drost (1633-1659) is just another version of the popular biblical theme ‘Bathsheba bathing’ and King David watching her and seducing her.

This version is quite different from the usual versions painted by other artists, because it deviates from the traditional method of depicting King David watching her, and follows the improvisation in the theme made by Rembrandt in his Bathsheba with King David’s Letter (or Bathsheba at Her Bath). Also, Drost even uses a title similar to the title of Rembrandt’s work.

Drost was one of the most talented disciples and close associates of Rembrandt. Perhaps, influenced by Rembrandt’s painting of Bathsheba, Drost painted Bathsheba with David’s Letter the same year. Both the paintings are now in Louvre Museum, Paris.

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