Sunday, May 26, 2013

Job 8

The engraving

Here we have a world of data.
The picture

Both of these are taken from The Book of Job  at the University of Adelaide.

The engraving has this legend:
'What shall we recieve Good at the hand of God and shall we 
not also recieve Evil': Blake wrote this in the upper border.

In the lower border:

"And when they lifted up their eyes afar off and knew him not
they lifted up their voice and wept & they rent every Man his
mantle & sprinkled dust upon their heads towards heaven"

And a bit lower:

 "ye have heard of the Patience of Job and have seen the 
end of the Lord"

The Blake Archive gives a detailed description of this Plate.

On the right we see a naked Job lying on a bed of straw. 

Instead of facing ahead he seems to be turned to the side, as 
you or I might do suffering extreme pain.

You might imagine the middle distance to show a decayed 
The mountains in the top might suggest the setting sun.

The lower border has a human figure at each end, each with 

an animal of some sort at this feet.

Behind Job is his wife, arms stretch up with palms out- 
expressing dismay.  Here come his three friends, arms up in 
horror at the man they had admired and looked up to ('oh-
my-gosh', what's happened to Job). on the left is Eliphaz the 
Temanite (see plate 9), then Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar 
the Naamathite.

The biblical source for this:
Job 2:
[11] Now when Job's three friends heard of all this evil that 
was come upon him, they came every one from his own 
place; Eliphaz the Temanite, and Bildad the Shuhite, and 
Zophar the Naamathite: for they had made an appointment 
together to come to mourn with him and to comfort him.
[12] And when they lifted up their eyes afar off, and knew him 
not, they lifted up their voice, and wept; and they rent every 
one his mantle, and sprinkled dust upon their heads toward 
[13] So they sat down with him upon the ground seven days 
and seven nights, and none spake a word unto him: for they 
saw that his grief was very great.

Then In Chapters 4 and 5  Eliphaz made an eloquent speech 
explaining to Job the root of his problems.  The Book of Job 
reported three speeches: beginning at Chapters 4, 15 and 
The Bible reported speeches of Bildad in Chapters 8, 18 and 
It reported speeches of  Zophar the Naamathite at Chapters 
11 and 20.
The speeches of these three men and Job's response to 
them take up most of the Book of Job.

From the Bible we learn that Job's friends tell him that he's 
suffering because he has sinned (that's an old superstition 
that is still very much alive; Blake's Book of Job in effect 
disproves that theory).

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