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Medieval & Renaissance Manuscripts

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Vita Christi (Life of Christ)
Belgium, Bruges, ca. 1440
MS M.649 fol. 7v

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Christ and Four Beasts, Heaven, Virgin Mary: as Intercessor, Virgin Mary: Coronation (?) -- Beneath canopy, with curtains held open by two angels, Christ, cross nimbed, right hand raised, left hand holding foliate scepter, is seated on draped bench, looking toward Virgin Mary, right, nimbed and crowned, hands joined, kneeling beside open book on the bench. At other end of bench angel blows bannered trumpet. They are all flanked by male saints, nimbed, some with hands joined, some gesturing, by female saints, nimbed, one crowned, some veiled, possibly nuns, some with hands joined, some gesturing, and by angels. In foreground one angel plays shawm (?) and another plays drum. All are surounded by polylobed frame possibly of rope or cord.
Near top of frame exterior are two evangelist symbols, on left, eagle, name inscribed S(AN)C(TU)S IOHANES on scroll, and on right, winged man, name S(AN)C(TU)S MATHEUS inscribed on scroll. Below knot in frame, and each within loop of rope (?), is lion, winged, name inscribed S(AN)C(TU)S MARCUS on scroll, and ox, winged, surrounded by rays, name inscribed S(AN)C(TU)S LUCAS on scroll.
Outside of frame, at bottom right of page, is castle, possibly Purgatory. Flames appear in gate and around walls. Water flows before castle wall; at end of flow is globe. To left of castle wall is field of stars extending to Evangelist Symbol of Luke. On top right of castle is niche containing bust of man (?), with rays as nimbus, possibly in water. Cross surmounts niche.

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