Benjamin West
American, active in Great Britain, 1738 ‑ 1820
Elisha Raising the Shunammite’s Son, 1766
Oil on canvas
40 3/16 × 50 1/4 in. (102.1 × 127.6 cm.)
Museum purchase from the Dr. George Angus Robertson Bequest  1964.7

Miracle Worker
In this work, West depicts a biblical story from the Book of Kings, in which the prophet Elisha is shown with his servant in the house of a wealthy woman whose son
has just died. In what may be the first recorded case of mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, Elisha, praying to the Lord, “went up, and lay upon the child, and put his mouth upon his mouth… and the child sneezed seven times, and the child opened his eyes.”