A very early larger-scale work; indeed, exceptionally large for this period. The other religious histories from this time are at most about a quarter of this size and often much smaller. Only the classical battle scenes from these years are of such large scale.
Good copy in Stockholm, Nationalmuseum (panel, 82 x 121), signed and dated 1606.
According to Louisa Wood Ruby, "Jan used the motif of the Tomb of Scipio in numerous compositions, including two works in the exhibition, [this] wonderful painting in Munich dated 1598 and the drawing of a Harbor with a Fish Market in a private collection. In examining possible motivations for the frequency of the appearance of the Tomb of Scipio motif in Jan’s oeuvre, a recent analysis convincingly suggests that its inclusion was meant to appeal to Neo-Stoic patrons in both Rome and later Antwerp, who would have understood and appreciated its reference to the Neo-Stoic ideal."