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The Book of Judith is a deuterocanonical book, included in the Septuagint and the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Christian Old Testament of the Bible, but excluded by Jews and Protestants. The book contains numerous historical anachronisms, which is why many scholars now accept it as non-historical; it has been considered a parable or perhaps the first historical novel.
Judith, the heroine of the book. She is a widow, once married to a certain Manasses. She uses her charm to become an intimate friend of Holofernes, but finally beheads him allowing Israel to counter-attack the Assyrians.
Holofernes, the villain of the book. He is a devout soldier of his king, whom he wants to see exalted in all lands. He is given the task of destroying the rebels who didn't support the king of Nineveh in his resistance against Cheleud and the king of Media, until Israel also becomes a target of his military campaign. Judith's charm occasions his death.
Tintoretto, Judith and Holofernes
Sandro BOTTICELLI, Judith Leaving the Tent of Holofernes
Sandro BOTTICELLI The Return of Judith to Bethulia
TIZIANO Vecellio, Judith
Valentin de Boulogne, Judith
Judith and the Head of Holofernes by Paolo Veronese
Giorgio Vasari, Judith and Holofernes
Artemisia GENTILESCHI, Judith and Her Maidservant
Cristoforo Allori, Judith with the Head of Holofernes
Gustav Klimt, Copy of Judith I
- And when a convenient day was come, that Herod on his birthday made a supper to his lords, high captains, and chief estates of Galilee; And when the daughter of the said Herodias came in, and danced, and pleased Herod and them that sat with him, the king said unto the damsel, Ask of me whatsoever thou wilt, and I will give it thee. And he sware unto her, Whatsoever thou shalt ask of me, I will give it thee, unto the half of my kingdom. And she went forth, and said unto her mother, What shall I ask? And she said, The head of John the Baptist.
- Gustave Moreau, The Tatooed Salome
- Alfons Mucha, Salome
- Circle of Rembrandt, The Beheading of St. John the Baptist.
- Guido Reni Salome with the Head of John the Baptist
Mattia Preti, Salome with the Head of St John the Baptist
Caravaggio, Salome with the Head of John the Baptist
Salome and the head of John the Baptist by Guercino
Cesare da Sesto, Salomè with head of John the Baptist
Gustave Moreau, Salome Carrying the Head of John the Baptist on a Platter
Delilah meaning "[She who] weakened or uprooted or impoverished" from the root dal meaning "weak or poor") appears only in the Hebrew bible Book of Judges 16, where she is the "woman in the valley of Sorek" whom Samson loved, and who was his downfall. Her figure, one of several dangerous temptresses in the Hebrew bible, has become emblematic: "Samson loved Delilah, she betrayed him, and, what is worse, she did it for money"
Rubens, Samson and Delilah
- Guercino, Samson and Delilah,
Simson and Delilah
Bartolomeo Biscaino Samson and Delilah
Domenico Fiasella, Samson and Delilah
Samson and Delilah
John Francis Rigaud, Samson breaking his bands or Samson and Delilah
Rembrandt, Samson and Delilah.
Alexandre Cabanel, Samson and Delilah
Gustave Moreau, Samson and Delilah