Fourth commandment: Honor your father and mother

Fourth commandment: Honor your father and mother


Fourth commandment: Honor your father and mother

[cda 2015]

Painting on softwood


Painting on softwood

[Städtische Galerie Dresden, revised 2015]

In anticipation of the bourgoise family of the modern era Hans der Maler develops an ideal image of domestic order and authority. The interior is scarcely less idealised, exhibiting a vaulted coffered ceiling and classical window frames in the style of the renaissance.

[Städtische Galerie Dresden, revised 2015]

Hans der Maler


Hans der Maler

[Städtische Galerie Dresden, revised 2015]

Production date
about 1528/29

Production date

about 1528/29

[Städtische Galerie Dresden, revised 2015]

Dimension of painted surface: 137 x 86.5 cm


  • Dimension of painted surface: 137 x 86.5 cm

  • Dimension including frame: 145.5 x 95 cm

  • [Städtische Galerie Dresden, revised 2015]

Signature / Dating


Inscriptions and Labels

upper edge: naming the commandment

Inscriptions and Labels

Inscriptions, Badges:

  • upper edge: naming the commandment

Städtische Galerie Dresden
Stadtmuseum Dresden
FR (1978) Nr.
Persistent Link


According to an invoice from 1528/29 that is now lost Hans Maler received 9 Schock and 17 groschens from the Kreuzkirche for the execution of panels depicting the ten commandments. Michel Uell was responsible for the preparation of the panels. (Neues Archiv für sächsische Geschichte IV, 1883, 105-109)
[Sandner 1993, 315]


Reference on page Catalogue Number Figure / Plate
Kolb 2005 A 115
AuthorKarin Kolb
TitleCranach - Die Gemälde in Dresden und ihre Geschichte
Publicationin Harald Marx, Ingrid Mössinger, Karin Kolb, eds., Cranach. Gemälde aus Dresden, Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz
Place of PublicationCologne
Year of Publication2005
Sandner, Ritschel 1994 191 Fig. A132
AuthorIngo Sandner, Iris Ritschel
TitleArbeitsweise und Maltechnik Lucas Cranachs und seiner Werkstatt
Publicationin Claus Grimm, Johannes Erichsen, Evamaria Brockhoff, eds., Lucas Cranach. Ein Maler-Unternehmer aus Franken, Exhib. Cat. Kronach 1994
SeriesVeröffentlichungen zur bayerischen Geschichte und Kultur
Place of PublicationAugsburg, Coburg
Year of Publication1994
Sandner 1993 315-316
AuthorIngo Sandner
TitleSpätgotische Tafelmalerei in Sachsen
Place of PublicationDresden, Basel
Year of Publication1993
Gurlitt 1900 16-20
AuthorCornelius Gurlitt
TitleBeschreibende Darstellung der älteren Bau- und Kunstdenkmäler des Königreichs Sachsen. Heft 21: Stadt Dresden
Place of PublicationDresden
Year of Publication1900

Research History / Discussion

This artist, who without doubt trained in the Cranach family workshop, belongs to a generation of artists that no longer concentrated on the production of altarpieces, but was flexible and executed various tasks. He might be Hans (Johannes) Maler who until 1535 was responsible for designing the annual 'Johannisspiele' in Dresden. An earlier attempt to attribute the initials 'GB' on the coat of arms to Gregor Byners - a Cranach apprentice mentioned as active in Schneeberg - can no longer be verified as the records have been lost, but it would seem more plausible that the initials are those of Gregor Byner, the mayor in office at the time and a person who would have exercised considerable influence on the commission. The sixth panel shows the coat of arms of the last catholic priest Pleban Dr. Peter Eyssenberg (P D P E).

In 1530 Johann Moler of Dresden registered his son as 'Valten molers' (Valentin Elner?), an event witnessed by four Freiberg citizens. [1] Whether he was the creator of the ten commandment panels and his father the Cranach apprentice to whom we have already attributed paintings in Zwickau, Rochlitz, Döbeln and Grimma must remain a hypothetical. It is however conceivable that the son followed in his father's footsteps.

A certain stylistic similarity to the Dresden ten commandment panels can be recognized in two images originally from the Riesaer monastery church, but were lost during the Second World War. They depicted the scenes of Christ in the Temple and the Flight into Egypt and were the recto and verso of a panel that had been split.[2]

[1] from Thieme/Becker

[2]Hentschel 1973, No. 343

[Sandner 1993, 315-316]

The painter Johann or Hans from Dresden represented the world of renaissance bourgoise life in the 'Ten commandments' cycle he painted for the Kreuzkirche in 1528/29. The former apprentice to Lucas Cranach the Elder combined a depiction of the fundamental maxim of jewish and christian religion with the representation of contemporary landscapes, streets, interiors and daily scenes. When reformation beliefs were introduced to the dukedom of Saxony in 1539 the paintings disappeared into the attic of the town hall. The most probable reason for this was that traces of the old faith were visible in some of the paintings.

[Städtische Galerie Dresden, revised 2015]

  • Fourth commandment: Honor your father and mother, about 1528/29


Compare images
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Technical studies

03. 2015Technical examination / Scientific analysis

  • Infrared reflectography
  • irr




- fluid, black medium; brush


- freehand underdrawing

- thin to slightly broader lines

- occasional hatching-strokes


- relatively binding for the final painted version; the lines delineate the main contours and describe essential details and facial features; occasional representation of volume with hatching-strokes


- minor corrections were made to forms during the painting process; changes e. g. the food on the plate, the woman’s bonnet



- Hans der Maler (Hans the Painter)

[Sandner, Smith-Contini, Heydenreich, cda 2016]

  • photographed by Helen Smith
  • photographed by Ingo Sandner

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