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The Last Supper: Judas Dipping his Hand in the Dish (La Céne. Judas met la main dans le plat)

James Tissot

European Art

For the Passover feast, the apostles (dressed in traveling clothes, like the Jews of the Old Testament book of Exodus, Tissot explains) meet in a room decorated with garlands. During the meal, Jesus reveals that he will be betrayed by one of his disciples; many of them worriedly ask, “Is it I?”

In this image, Jesus hands the sop, or dipped bread, to Judas Iscariot, identifying him as the traitor. Jesus later dismisses him from the company, urging him to be quick about his business.

Here, John the Evangelist, described as the “beloved disciple,” lays his head on Jesus’ shoulder, as is traditional in scenes of the Last Supper. By contrast, Judas, across the table, is already distanced from Jesus, spatially as well as spiritually. And while all the rest of the company wears white, Judas’ robes are dark.
MEDIUM Opaque watercolor over graphite on gray wove paper
  • Place Made: France
  • DATES 1886–1894
    DIMENSIONS Image: 9 3/4 x 19 3/8 in. (24.8 x 49.2 cm) Sheet: 9 3/4 x 19 3/8 in. (24.8 x 49.2 cm) Frame: 22 7/8 x 28 7/8 x 1 1/2 in. (58.1 x 73.3 x 3.8 cm)  (show scale)
    SIGNATURE Signed bottom right: "J.J. Tissot"
    COLLECTIONS European Art
    ACCESSION NUMBER 00.159.221
    CREDIT LINE Purchased by public subscription
    PROVENANCE 1900, purchased from the artist by the Brooklyn Museum.
    Provenance FAQ
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CAPTION James Tissot (Nantes, France, 1836–1902, Chenecey–Buillon, France). The Last Supper: Judas Dipping his Hand in the Dish (La Céne. Judas met la main dans le plat), 1886–1894. Opaque watercolor over graphite on gray wove paper, Image: 9 3/4 x 19 3/8 in. (24.8 x 49.2 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Purchased by public subscription, 00.159.221 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 00.159.221_PS2.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 00.159.221_PS2.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2008
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    RIGHTS STATEMENT No known copyright restrictions
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