Swords against death


Earlier this week Mr BibliOdyssey posted a link on Twitter to a blog entry of his from 2008, a collection of prints by Dutch artist Alexander Ver Huell (1822–1897). If I’d seen his post originally I didn’t recall it so this swordfight gives me an opportunity to draw attention to Ver Huell’s macabre and diabolical work. This unwinnable duel brings to mind the battle with the band of skeletons from Ray Harryhausen’s Jason and the Argonauts (1963), one of my favourite things in the whole world when I was 10. Given how many of the pictures in the Men with swords archive have a quasi-classical theme it’s perhaps appropriate to list Jason and co. among them.


3 thoughts on “Swords against death”

  1. Did you notice the picture on the wall behind them? Maybe there’s a crumb of hope because I see David letting fly his slingshot at Goliath: another impossible fight, and one that ended unexpectedly.

    I liked the Harryhausen skele-fight as well!

  2. I noticed that detail but wouldn’t have given it much thought if you hadn’t mentioned it. I think you’re right, it does seem pertinent somehow, especially being so prominently displayed.

  3. I suppose both pairs suggest a revolt against a “giant” and evil tyranny. Death and the young man are in similar postures to David and Goliath…

    What a sad life the man had in his later years!

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