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The Resurrection

  • Object:

    Panel

  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    15th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Carved, painted and gilt alabaster

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Dr W. L. Hildburgh FSA

  • Museum number:

    A.17-1946

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

The haloed and bearded figure of Christ, wearing the torse, the loincloth and the shroud over his shoulders, steps from the tomb with his right leg, straight onto the chest of a moustachioed soldier.

The design is unusual and naive, with small ledges providing support for Christ's cross-staff and the soldier on the right. This panel formed part of the same altarpiece as numbers A16-1946 and A.17-1946.

Physical description

The haloed and bearded figure of Christ, wearing the torse, the loincloth and the shroud over his shoulders, is represented with his head inclined to the right and, presumably, blessing with his right hand. In his left hand he holds the cross-staff and banner of the Resurrection which rests on a small protruding ledge in front of the tomb. He steps from the tomb with his right leg, straight onto the chest of a moustachioed soldier. The soldier wears a pointed basinet, an unusually loose low-belted tunic with wide sleeves, gauntlets and leg armour; he lies asleep across the front of the panel, resting his head on his right hand. Three more figures of apparently sleeping soldiers, wearing low-belted jupons, are represented on the panel, one seated on a ledge on the right of the tomb, leaning his head on his hand supported by his battle-axe, his feet resting on another ledge. The second, behind him, holds a lance and the third behind the tomb on the left of the panel, leans on a spear which he holds in his left hand resting it on the ground in front of the tomb. A half-length figure of an angel, hands presumably raised in prayer, is shown on the top left corner of the panel.

Christ's right hand and most of his cross-staff are missing. The head and hands of the angel are missing. The top of the spear held by the soldier on the left of the panel is missing. There are various small cracks in the panel. There are two holes through the panel by the left leg of the recumbent soldier in the foreground.

Green paint and the usual daisy pattern remain on the ground at the bottom of the panel. The soldiers' faces are blackened to show their villainy. The background of the top of the panel is gilt. The halo behind Christ is painted blue.

The back of the panel is marked with two long parallel scratches and a large X, formed of two scratches. There are three holes drilled in the back, filled with lead, and holding latten wires. The bottom has been cut away.

Place of Origin

England (made)

Date

15th century (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

Carved, painted and gilt alabaster

Marks and inscriptions

Two long parallel scratches and a large 'X' formed of two scratches.
On the back of the panel.

Dimensions

Height: 40.4 cm, Width: 24.1 cm

Object history note

Acquired by Dr W. L. Hildburgh in Paris. On loan from him since 1920 and given by Dr Hildburgh in 1946.

Historical significance: The design is unusual, and particularly naive, in that no fewer than three small ledges have been provided to support Christ's cross-staff and the soldier on the right.

Descriptive line

Alabaster panel depicting the Resurrection. English, 15th century.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Cheetham, Francis. English Medieval Alabasters. Oxford: Phaidon-Christie's Limited, 1984. p. 280 (cat. 207), ill. ISBN 0-7148-8014-0
Hildburgh, W.L. Notes on some English Alabaster Carvings. Antiquaries Journal. I, 1921, p. 225.

Materials

Alabaster; Paint; Gilt

Techniques

Carving; Painting; Gilding

Subjects depicted

Spear; Tunic; Tomb; Soldier; Halo; Staff; Lance; Torse; Angel; Loincloth; Shroud; Armour; Battle-axe; Gauntlet

Categories

Christianity; Religion; Sculpture

Collection

Sculpture Collection

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