The night knows nothing of the chants of night.
It is what it is as I am what I am:
And in perceiving this I best perceive myself
And you. Only we two may interchange
Each in the other what each has to give.
Only we two are one, not you and night,
Nor night and I, but you and I, alone,
So much alone, so deeply by ourselves,
So far beyond the casual solitudes,
That night is only the background of our selves,
Supremely true each to its separate self,
In the pale light that each upon the other throws.
Rembrandt, Two Scholars Disputing, 1628, oil on panel, 72 x 60 cm, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne. Source
This is believed to be a representation of Saints Peter and Paul, though they are not depicted with any of their recognisable attributes. Instead, Rembrandt relies on the viewer’s awareness of both figures’ traditional appearances, such as Peter’s white beard.