The Dinner in the House of the Pharisee

17th century
Church of Sant'Alvise (Louis of Toulouse), Venice

As in Luke 7:36-50, the "sinful woman's" devotion provokes a colloquy between Jesus and the Pharisee. Strikingly, the three figures and the colloquy are relegated to the lower left of the scene, partly to express the diners' lack of interest in Jesus or his parables and also perhaps to permit a show of painterly talent. (The latter purpose seems to have failed; web sites devoted to the art in the church rarely even mention this work.)

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Photographed at the church by Richard Stracke, shared under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.