Signed and dated lower right, "Rembrandt f.1657".
Printed on a sheet of vellum which has been patched at the upper left, this is one of five known impressions of the first state. The great freedom with which Rembrandt has scratched the image into the plate is paralleled by the bold painterly handling of surface tone. Heavy tone casts a veil of darkness over two-thirds of the sheet. The light triangular area between the saint and the tree trunk is here reduced, anticipating the addition of further landscape detail in the following state. Subtle wiping creates lights which half reveal the crucifix and create an aura around the head of the saint. The area of foliage in the lower left corner has failed to print in full detail. (Boston 1969, no. 101)