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The Prodigal Son, also known as Two Sons, Lost Son, The Running Father and The Loving Father is one of the parables of Jesus. It appears in only one of the Canonical gospels of the New Testament. According to the Gospel of Luke (Luke 15:11-32), a father has two sons. The younger son asks for his inheritance before the father dies, and the father agrees. The younger son, after wasting his fortune (the word "prodigal" means "wastefully extravagant"), goes hungry during a famine, and becomes so destitute he longs to eat the same food given to hogs, unclean animals in Jewish culture. He then returns home with the intention of repenting and begging his father to be one of his hired servants, expecting his relationship with his father is likely severed. Regardless, the father finds him on the road and immediately welcomes him back as his son and holds a feast to celebrate his return, which includes killing a fattened calf usually reserved for special occasions. The older son refuses to participate, stating that in all the time he has worked for the father, he never disobeyed him; yet, he did not even receive a goat to celebrate with his friends. The father reminds the older son that the son has always been with him and everything the father has is the older son's (his inheritance). But, they should still celebrate the return of the younger son because he was lost and is now found. It is the third and final part of a cycle on redemption, following the Parable of the Lost Sheep and the Parable of the Lost Coin.

In Western Catholic tradition, this parable is usually read on the fourth Sunday of Lent (in Year C), while in the Eastern Orthodox Church it is read on the Sunday of the Prodigal Son., Pompeo BatoniReturn of the Prodigal Son

Prodigal Son Painting - The Return Of The Prodigal Son by Pompeo Batoni

The Return Of The Prodigal Son, Pompeo Batoni

Prodigal Son Painting - Return Of The Prodigal Son by Simon de Vos

Return Of The Prodigal Son, Simon de Vos

Prodigal Son Painting - The Prodigal Son Receiving His Portion Of The Inheritance by Bartolome Esteban Murillo

The Prodigal Son Receiving His Portion Of The Inheritance, Bartolome Esteban Murillo

Prodigal Son Painting - Waiting For The Prodigal Son by Jules Pascin

Waiting For The Prodigal Son, Jules Pascin

Prodigal Son Painting - The Prodigal Son Abandoned by Bartolome Esteban Murillo

The Prodigal Son Abandoned, Bartolome Esteban Murillo

Prodigal Son Painting - The Return Of The Prodigal Son by Francesco Bassano

The Return Of The Prodigal Son, Francesco Bassano

Prodigal Son Painting - The Return Of The Prodigal Son by Bartolome Esteban Murillo

The Return Of The Prodigal Son, Bartolome Esteban Murillo

Prodigal Son Painting - Return Of The Prodigal Son by Peter Paul Rubens

Return Of The Prodigal Son, Peter Paul Rubens

Return of the Prodigal Son, Guercino


Return of the Prodigal Son, Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn


The Prodigal Son, Salvator Rosa

The Prodigal Son, Gerard van Honthorst

Parable of the prodigal son, Domenico Fetti

The Prodigal Son, Jan Sanders van Hemessen

Return of the Prodigal Son, Palma il Giovane

 Amusements of the Prodigal Son, Palma il Giovane

The prodigal son, Christiaen van Couwenbergh

The Return of the prodigal son, Bartolomé Esteban Perez Murillo

The Prodigal Son Feasting with Courtesans, Bartolomé Esteban Perez Murillo

The farewell of the prodigal son, Bartolomé Esteban Perez Murillo

The Prodigal Son,Thomas Couture


Return of the Prodigal Son, Hans Sebald Beham


The Prodigal Son among pigs, Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn


The Prodigal Son with prostitutes, Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn


The prodigal son leaves his home, Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn


The Return of the Prodigal Son, Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn


Return of the Prodigal Son, Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn


Return of the Prodigal Son, Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn


The Prodigal Son, Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn


The prodigal son at the pigs, Albrecht Dürer


Return of the Prodigal Son, Václav Vavrinec Reiner

The Prodigal Son, Jean-Baptiste Greuze


The Prodigal Son, Jacob Lucius the Elder


The Prodigal Son, Abraham Bach the Elder

See also : Bible, Paintings, Drawings

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