Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge, UK/Bridgeman Art Library

“Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?” (1 Samuel 17:43). The mighty Goliath, depicted in an 1863 oil painting by the French Impressionist Edgar Degas, is insulted that his young attacker David (foreground) should choose such meager weapons, more appropriate for abusing a dog than bringing down a giant. Throughout the Bible, calling someone else a dog is an extreme insult; calling oneself a dog expresses extreme self-deprecation.