Happy Thanksgiving

Dutch Stillife 2

Thanksgiving is all about the celebration of a bountiful harvest, and giving thanks for the past year, either to your God or the earth for what has been provided.  In any case, it is a joyful gathering of people celebrating life.  A lot of the most famous dinner/still life paintings depict a happy crowd and full table.  I also like that many paintings include at least a few dogs.

 

Jan Steen

Jan Steen, The Merry Family 1668

 

Flemish painter Adriaen Utrecht, 1644

Flemish painter Adriaen Utrecht, 1644

Thanksgiving Day

Lydia Maria Child

(1802 – 1880)

Over the river, and through the wood,
  To grandfather’s house we go;
       The horse knows the way 
       To carry the sleigh
  Through the white and drifted snow.

Over the river, and through the wood—
  Oh, how the wind does blow!
       It stings the toes 
       And bites the nose
  As over the ground we go.

Over the river, and through the wood,
  To have a first-rate play.
       Hear the bells ring 
       “Ting-a-ling-ding”,
  Hurrah for Thanksgiving Day!

Over the river, and through the wood
  Trot fast, my dapple-gray!
       Spring over the ground, 
       Like a hunting-hound!
  For this is Thanksgiving Day.

Over the river, and through the wood,
  And straight through the barn-yard gate.
       We seem to go 
       Extremely slow,—
  It is so hard to wait!

Over the river and through the wood—
  Now grandmother’s cap I spy!
       Hurrah for the fun! 
       Is the pudding done?
  Hurrah for the pumpkin-pie!

corn

Indian corn, one of the items at the original Thanksgiving celebration in 1621

According to an account written by one of the original settlers, William Bradford, the harvest feast included the following: venison, water fowl, cod, bass, wild turkeys, and indian corn.

The_First_Thanksgiving_cph.3g04961

Jean Leon Gerome Ferris, The First Thanksgiving 1621

 

Still life with turkey pie

Still life with turkey pie, Pieter Claesz, 1627

 

Still_life_of_fruit_in_a_porcelain_bowl,_a_golden_goblet,_lobster_and_a_rummer,_by_monogrammist_JHV

Typical Still life of fruit in a porcelain bowl, a golden goblet, lobster and a rummer

 

Pieter_Claesz._-_Still-life_-_WGA4968

Pieter Claesz (c.1597–1660), Still Life (1623)

 

A more recent painting, Kent Bellows' self-portrait with Wine Glass, 2000

A more recent painting, Kent Bellows’ Gluttony, 2000.  I love his version of a bountiful still life.  (Kent Bellows 1949 – 2005)

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