Gerard David (Netherlandish, ca. 1455–1523)
Oil on wood; Overall 21 x 15 in. (53.3 x 38.1 cm); painted surface 20 5/8 x 14 3/4 in. (52.5 x 37.5 cm)
Rogers Fund, 1909 (09.157)
In his translation of the Bible, Saint Jerome reads of the event portrayed here, attended by Mary Magdalene, the Virgin, and Saint John the Evangelist. David has matched the setting to the theme. The sky is darkened at the moment of Christ's death on Golgotha (literally, "the place of the skull"), and the holy city of Jerusalem with its prominent Church of the Dome of the Rock forms the backdrop.
Except for the right vertical element, the frame is original to the picture.