Skip to Content
Closed today, next open tomorrow. Closed today, next open tomorrow.

The Expulsion of Adam and Eve from Paradise

A work made of oil on canvas.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

Image actions

  • A work made of oil on canvas.


1791, retouched 1803


Benjamin West
British, born in America, 1738-1820

About this artwork

This tumultuous scene shows Adam and Eve, the first man and woman in the Hebrew Bible, being driven out of the Garden of Eden. Benjamin West created it as a preparatory sketch for one of several large paintings intended for a chapel in Windsor Castle, an ancient seat of the British monarchy that was undergoing restoration in the late 18th century. West worked on the project for two decades, but King George III abandoned plans for the chapel’s decoration and the paintings were never installed.

One of the earliest American artists to achieve international renown, West spent much of his career in London. There, he served as a teacher and mentor to a generation of younger American artists who trained abroad, including Rembrandt Peale and Thomas Sully.


On View, Gallery 169


Painting and Sculpture of Europe


Benjamin West


The Expulsion of Adam and Eve from Paradise


England (Artist's nationality:)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.



Oil on canvas


Inscribed in clouds near left edge: B West 1791./retouched. 1803


48.6 × 72.9 cm (19 1/8 × 28 11/16 in.)

Credit Line

George F. Harding Collection

Reference Number


IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

Learn more.

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.


Sign up for our enewsletter to receive updates.

Learn more

Image actions