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Archangeli Michael | Michael the Archangel

Part of the collection: Dutch and Flemish graphics

Popularization note

The artwork features an angel trampling a dragon lying on the ground. The creature is helplessly raising its head, its mouth open, an arrow-shaped tongue sticking out. In his hands, the angel is holding the attributes of the Passion and Resurrection of Christ: a palm leaf in his right hand, and a banner with a cross against the light background in his left hand. He is wearing what resembles a knight’s armour with a decorative breastplate overlaying a ruffled dress, with sleeves embellished with putti heads on the shoulders and with decorative greaves. His head, turned to the sky, is circled by a halo of twelve stars, which identifies this representation as the apocalyptic archangel Michael. Moreover, the scenes in the background explain that Michael’s victory over the dragon, symbolising Satan, is a prefiguration, that is the indication of the coming of Christ. On the left, Michael with his spear is conquering Lucifer and his supporters, who rebelled against God, and pushes them down to hell; on the right, Christ is victoriously rising from his tomb witnessed by two surprised Roman soldiers. The artwork is from the 17th century publication published by Gerard Valck, containing several series of representations. The first series comprises of twelve engravings with Baby Jesus and archangels; the second one consists of seven personifications of virtues; others present various biblical scenes. The National Museum in Szczecin also holds two works from the archangel series, presenting Zafkiel and Rafael. The author of this artwork, Crispijn de Passe I (around 1565-1637), was an engraver, a draftsman, a painter and a publisher, as well as a doyen of a well-known family of engravers, de Passe. He studied under Dirck Volckertszoon Coornher (1522-1590) and worked in several artistic centres: Antwerp, Aix-la-Chapelle, Cologne and Utrecht. The subjects of his work were diverse, he made reproduction engravings, illustrated Metamorphoses by Ovid, and his portraits of English nobility were published in Horologia Anglica. Ewa Gwiazdowska

Signatures and inscriptions:

  1. Inscription;signature: Crisp. de. | Pas. in. et ex.
  2. Inscription: ARCHANGELI MICHAEL 6. | Luciferum Coelo deturbo Morte subacta, | Rursus adis viuos mortue Christi, redux
  3. Inscription: 441 
  4. Seal (mark);inscription: M.P.Z. | SZCZECIN | Dział... | Nr...2929

Information about the object

Information about this object

Author / creator

Passe, Crispijn de starszy (około 1565-1637)

Object type

chalcography (print)


copper engraving


watermarked ribber laid paper

Origin / acquisition method


Creation time / dating

1590 — 1600

Creation / finding place

powstanie: Holandia (Europa)


Muzeum Narodowe w Szczecinie

Identification number


Location / status

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