John Martin (1789–1854) „The Great Day of His Wrath“, ca. 1851
The End of the World, commonly known as The Great Day of His Wrath, is an 1851–1853 oil painting on canvas by the English painter John Martin. According to Frances Carey, the painting shows the „destruction of Babylon and the material world by natural cataclysm“. This painting, Frances Carey holds, is a response to the emerging industrial scene of London as a metropolis in the early nineteenth century, and the original growth of the Babylon civilization and its final destruction. Some other scholars such as William Feaver see the painting as „the collapse of Edinburgh in Scotland“. Charles F. Stuckey is skeptical of the link with Edinburgh. According to the Tate, the painting depicts a portion of Revelation 16, a chapter from the New Testament.
Leopold Martin, John Martin’s son, said that his father found the inspiration for this painting on a night journey through the Black Country. This has led some scholars to hold that the rapid industrialization of England in the early nineteenth century influenced Martin.
Some authors have used the painting as the front cover for their books, examples include Mass of the Apocalypse and Studies in the Book of Revelation.