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The Hay Wain

  • ‘The Hay Cart’ © Madrid, Museo Nacional del Prado

    ‘The Hay Cart’ © Madrid, Museo Nacional del Prado

     
  

Category

Painting

Date

Around 1516

Artist

El Bosco

Cultural background

Flemish School

Original title

El carro de heno
Prado Museum
Madrid
Madrid
Madrid

Triptych by Bosch dedicated to the theme of sin.

The left side shows the origin of sin in the world. In the centre we can see humanity dragged by sin, by the hay wain, a biblical metaphor that alludes to the ephemeral and transitory nature of things in this world. The board on the right shows hell, the destination of sinners, with punishments according to their faults. When the triptych is closed we can see an old pilgrim travelling the journey of life, which is full of dangers. In the central board there is a Flemish proverb: "The world is a hay wain and everybody grabs from it as much as he can get". All the social classes, including the clergy - censored because of their vices such as greed and lust - want to get the hay and get on the wain.

Details of the work

Origin
Royal Collection

Dimensions
147 cm x 212 cm

Technique
Oil

Material
Board

Room in the museum
56a

  

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