The Fall of the Damned

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The Fall of the Damned
Peter Paul Rubens 063.jpg
ArtistPeter Paul Rubens
Yearca. 1620
MediumOil on canvas
Dimensions286.0 cm × 224.0 cm (112.60 in × 88.19 in)
LocationAlte Pinakothek, Munich

The Fall of the Damned, alternately known as The Fall of the Rebel Angels[1] is a monumental c. 1620 religious painting by Peter Paul Rubens. It features a jumble of the bodies of the damned, hurled into abyss by archangel Michael and accompanying angels.[2]

In 1959, an art vandal threw an acid on the painting. According to him, he did not directly destroy the work, but the acid "relieves one from the work of destruction".[3]


Study for The Fall of the Damned, c.1614–1618

The sketch of The Fall of the Damned was made in black and red chalks, with a grey wash and is kept in the British Museum. It is assumed to be the work of a studio assistant, which Rubens then went over with brush and oil colour.[4] The dramatic chiaroscuro of the human forms and clouds emphasizes the darkness into which these figures fall, far from the heavenly light above.


  1. ^ "Fall Of The Rebel Angels". Retrieved 2010-11-17.
  2. ^ Sophie Perryer, 10 years 100 artists, Struik, 2004
  3. ^ "Destructivism". Heyoka Magazine. Archived from the original on 2010-09-06. Retrieved 2010-11-17.
  4. ^ "Peter Paul Rubens, drawing for The Fall of the Damned". British Museum. Retrieved 2010-11-17.