The blinded figure rushes towards the viewer with a power that threatens to shatter the picture. Samson’s terror is expressed in his heroic nakedness, embittered blood-streaked face, and hands that can smash stone. Since the Middle Ages, artists’ imaginations had been set on fire by the notion of “God’s Chosen One” who towered mightily above other human beings: as a prefiguration of Christ, as a counterpart to Hercules, and as an image of the tragedy of the hero who pays for his untrammeled sensuality with his eyesight. The Blinded Samson is Corinth’s third and last treatment of this theme. As a reaction to the stroke which threatened the artist’s life in December 1911, it steps completely outside the traditional boundaries of its genre and finally shakes off the spell cast by the earlier example of Rembrandt. In this vision of the impending act of breaking free, which will destroy both Samson and his enemies, the painting becomes a drama of life and death.