- Reference number
- Bassano, Jacopo
- The Israelites drinking the Miraculous Water
- 146 cm x 230 cm
- On display
- Royal Collection
This painting depicts two episodes. In the middle ground, Moses and Aaron direct the Israelites toward the Promised Land (Exodus 13, 21-22). In the foreground, far from the journey, persons and animals quench their thirst in the fountain that Moses caused to flow from the boulder at Mount Horeb (Exodus 17, 1-7)
Some critics see this as a merely decorative work, while others believe that the image of the human and animal figures quenching their thirst represent a grave warning about the weakness of "homo carnalis", always ready to succumb to worldly pleasure, while the presence of Moses and Aaron leading their people would tie in with the Counterreformation's emphasis on social hierarchy.
This work was listed at Madrid's Alcázar Palace in 1636.