Washington Allston, Elijah in the Desert, 1818⁠

In the Hebrew Bible, King Ahab of Israel married foreigner Jezebel, who moved in with all her priests who worshipped the deities Baal and Asherah and started changing the religion of the land. Yahweh became angry and sent his prophet Elijah to tell Ahab to reign in Jezebel or face a curse of severe drought. Ahab ignored the warning. Meanwhile, Jezebel was killing off Yahweh’s prophets left and right, so Elijah was forced to hide out in the desert where god provided him water from a stream and brought food to him by way of ravens.⁠⠀
Allston was primarily a landscape painter but this genre of painting didn’t hold as much value as history or religious paintings in the 19th Century, so he smartly threw in a figure and some ravens to elevate the status of the work.⁠⠀

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