Rembrandt van Rijn, c. 1665 Kenwood House, Hamptead, London

“As a child I used often to look at Rembrandt’s self-portrait in London’s Kenwood House, a picture which gave peculiar comfort in the way it seamlessly joins greatness and frailty. It echoes everyone’s vocation to glory, with everyone’s painful self-knowledge.” David Thistlethwaite, The Art of God and the Religions of Art, 7.

Later, “The self-portrait in which you can see yourself – and humanity’s condition: greatness almost swallowed up by self-harm; and self-reproach almost yielded to forgiveness.” Thistlethwaite, Plate 2

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