Diptych with Scenes from Christ's Passion

Date: ca. 1350–75

Geography: Made in Paris(?), France

Culture: French

Medium: Ivory with metal mounts

Dimensions: Overall (open): 8 x 7 15/16 x 7/16 in. (20.3 x 20.2 x 1.1 cm)
Overall (closed): 8 x 3 15/16 x 7/8 in. (20.3 x 10 x 2.2 cm)
Overall (Each Leaf): 8 x 3 15/16 x 7/16 in. (20.3 x 10 x 1.1 cm)

Classification: Ivories

Credit Line: Rogers Fund, 1950

Accession Number: 50.195

Description

This diptych reads from top to bottom and left to right. Its narrative constitutes a thorough telling of the events that led up to Jesus' Crucifixion, beginning with the Entry into Jerusalem, the Last Supper, the Washing of the Feet, and the Agony in the Garden of Gethsemane. All of these scenes focus on the special relationship Christ had with the apostles, but the bottom register breaks with this pattern. With the arrest, Christ was betrayed by the apostle Judas and most of his apostles fled in fear. The only apostle to remain at the Crucifixion itself, shown at the bottom of the right leaf, was John the Evangelist. The sparse rendering of the Crucifixion scene here marks a strong difference from the cramped and intimate renderings of the large diptych attributed to Cologne (acc. no. 1970.324.8a,b).

Belonging to the so-called Large Passion diptych group, the carver of this example relied on the popular iconographic models employed by a number of Parisian ateliers in the second half of the fourteenth century.

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