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Medieval & Renaissance Manuscripts

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Vita Christi (Life of Christ)
France, perhaps Corbie, ca. 1175
MS M.44 fol. 11v

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Christ: Harrowing of Hell -- Christ, cross-nimbed, crowned, tramples on recumbent horned devil (Satan) and with His right hand thrusts cross-staff into his jaws. With His left hand, He grasps Adam, nude, beside nude tonsured cleric, both before Hell Mouth in which are five figures, accompanied by devil at top.
Above, angel, swinging censer, descends from clouds. In foreground are three figures of Damned, two nude, one seated, and the third prostrate, with extended hands, amid flames.
Scene against gold background, within frame decorated with foliate ornament and four human heads in corner squares.

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