The Baptism of Jesus (Baptême de Jésus)
According to Matthew, Jesus travels from Galilee to Judaea to be baptized by John the Baptist in the Jordan River. Although John humbly protests and suggests that it is he who should be baptized by Jesus instead, Jesus insists. Here, a dove descends from the heavens as Jesus emerges from the water, while a voice from above calls him “my beloved Son.” Perhaps in reference to earlier passages in the Gospels relating the curiosity and suspicion John’s desert ministry inspired in some quarters, several witnesses surreptitiously watch the proceedings through a screen of rushes on the riverbank.
Tissot’s text states that John the Baptist and Jesus, cousins often presented as childhood companions in artistic tradition, met again as adults at a place marked with twelve stones, indicating the spot where the Jewish people had crossed the Jordan and reentered Israel after their wanderings in the desert—a confluence of events linking the narratives of the Old and New Testaments. In the watercolor, John and his acolytes appear to stand on these stones as they perform the rite.
Opaque watercolor over graphite on gray wove paper
Image: 8 1/2 x 5 1/2 in. (21.6 x 14 cm)
Sheet: 8 1/2 x 5 1/2 in. (21.6 x 14 cm)
Frame: 20 x 15 x 1 1/2 in. (50.8 x 38.1 x 3.8 cm) (show scale)
Signed bottom right: "J.J. Tissot"
This item is not on view
Purchased by public subscription
No known copyright restrictions
This work may be in the public domain in the United States. Works created by United States and non-United States nationals published prior to 1923 are in the public domain, subject to the terms of any applicable treaty or agreement.
You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this work. Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please contact email@example.com
The Museum does not warrant that the use of this work will not infringe on the rights of third parties, such as artists or artists' heirs holding the rights to the work. It is your responsibility to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions before copying, transmitting, or making other use of protected items beyond that allowed by "fair use," as such term is understood under the United States Copyright Act.
The Brooklyn Museum makes no representations or warranties with respect to the application or terms of any international agreement governing copyright protection in the United States for works created by foreign nationals.
For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress
, Cornell University
, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums
, and Copyright Watch
For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright
If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
James Tissot (French, 1836-1902). The Baptism of Jesus (Baptême de Jésus), 1886-1894. Opaque watercolor over graphite on gray wove paper, Image: 8 1/2 x 5 1/2 in. (21.6 x 14 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Purchased by public subscription, 00.159.49
overall, 00.159.49_PS2.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2008
"CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome
any additional information you might have.