Thursday, May 10, 2018

01 Antique Religious Carvings - Ivory Sculptures from the Bible, with footnotes, 8

A late 14th century French carved ivory relief of the Crucifixion

A diptych is any object with two flat plates attached at a hinge. From the Middle Ages many panel paintings took the diptych form, as small portable works for personal use; Eastern Orthodox ones may be called "travelling icons". Although the tryptych form was more common, there were also ivory diptychs with religious scenes carved in relief, a form found first in Byzantine art before becoming very popular in the Gothic period in the West, where they were mainly produced in Paris. These suited the mobile lives of medieval elites. More on diptychs

High-relief depiction with a plain border, formerly the right wing of a hinged diptych. The piece depicts numerous figures attendant at the Crucifixion. We see Christ being offered the sponge and Longinus with the lance below him. The mourning Virgin is depicted on the left with Saint John and Mary Magdalene, two prophets are seen on the right, and in the upper arches we see two angels with symbols of the sun and moon.. More on this carving

When ivory reappeared in northern Europe in the mid-thirteenth century, artists and patrons quickly renewed the art of ivory carving. Instead of a revival of earlier forms, however, the Gothic period saw the revival of a new range of ivory object types: statuettes and statuette groups for the church or the private home; small paneled objects called diptychs (two panels), triptychs (three panels), and polyptychs (many panels) with scenes in low relief that unfold for private meditation; and luxury objects for personal use, such as combs, mirror backs, writing tablets, and caskets. The golden age of Gothic ivory carving spanned a century and a half, from about 1230 to 1380, at which point the supply of ivory to northern Europe again dwindled. More on Ivory Carving in the Gothic Era

The crucifixion of Jesus occurred in 1st century Judea, most probably between the years 30 and 33 AD. Jesus' crucifixion is described in the four canonical gospels, referred to in the New Testament epistles, attested to by other ancient sources, and is established as a historical event confirmed by non-Christian sources.

According to the canonical gospels, Jesus, the Christ, was arrested, tried, and sentenced by Pontius Pilate to be scourged, and finally crucified by the Romans. Jesus was stripped of his clothing and offered wine mixed with gall to drink, before being crucified. He was then hung between two convicted thieves and according to Mark's Gospel, died some six hours later. During this time, the soldiers affixed a sign to the top of the cross stating "Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews" in three languages. They then divided his garments among them, but cast lots for his seamless robe. After Jesus' death they pierced his side with a spear to be certain that he had died. More on the crucifixion

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