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TitleSketch of "Nephi in Laban’s Armor"
Publication TypeArtwork
Year of PublicationNot Available
AuthorsFriberg, Arnold
KeywordsLaban; Nephi (Son of Lehi); Zoram (Servant of Laban)

Graphite on Paper

8 1⁄2 x 5 1⁄2 in.

1 Nephi 4:19

Among the first works created by Friberg as he explored themes for his commission of twelve paintings, he depicts Nephi after he is commanded to kill the wicked Laban. According to the first book of Nephi:

19 And after I had smitten off his head with his own sword, I took the garments of Laban and put them upon mine own body; yea, even every whit; and I did gird on his armor about my loins.

20 And after I had done this, I went forth unto the treasury of Laban. And as I went forth towards the treasury of Laban, behold, I saw the servant of Laban who had the keys of the treasury. And I commanded him in the voice of Laban, that he should go with me into the treasury.

21 And he supposed me to be his master, Laban, for he beheld the garments and also the sword girded about my loins.

Nephi proceeds to convince Zoram (Laban’s faithful servant) to recover the brass plates, which Laban refused to fairly exchange. And Zoram joins Nephi and his family as they journey towards the promised land.

Friberg makes the subtle but brilliant choice to have Nephi face the viewer as he turns his back to Zoram in order to not give away his real identity. Before this sketch, Friberg had done several sketches of both Nephi and Zoram, whose appearance is consistent throughout all his drawings and paintings. 

Scripture Reference

1 Nephi 4:19-27