Monday, April 19, 2021

1671 Allegories of Spring- In a Garden with Putties

1671 Spring from The Four Seasons by Matthias Scheits (German artist c 1625 - 1700) Landscape with 5 putti in a landscape playing with birds.

Sunday, April 18, 2021

17C Allegory of Spring- In a Garden

1660 Spring from The Four Seasons by Jean Leblond 1605-1666. Here a couple sit on a turf seat under a tree in a garden setting.The young woman is holding flowers in her right hand and placing her left hand on the man's thigh.  The man appears to be holding a staff in his left hand. 

Saturday, April 17, 2021

17C Allegory of Spring- In a Garden with Putti

1650s Spring from The Four Seasons by Jonas Umbach (German artist c 1624 - 1700) Four putti in a garden with a fountain in background: one putti is being crowned with a flower wreath.  Holding on to the Sweet Divine - “The Lord God took man & put him in the Garden of Eden to work it & to keep it.”  Genesis 2:15. 

Friday, April 16, 2021

17C Spring Boating Party Gathering Green Branches

Sebastian Vrancx (Flemish artist, 1573-1647) The Four Seasons - Spring Boating Party Gathering Green Branches to decorate their homes.  Holding on to the Sweet Divine - “The Lord God took man & put him in the Garden of Eden to work it & to keep it.” Genesis 2:15.

Thursday, April 15, 2021

18C Allegory of Spring - Love & Bird Nests

18C English Woodcut of Spring. A bird's nest with chirping chicks is gently placed in the young woman's apron.

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

18C Allegory of Spring - Love & Bird Nests

1796 Spring Published by George Thompson London

This depiction of Spring shows a family on a river bank.  The man is holding a fishing rod and displying a fish caught on the line, while the woman opens a wicker basket full of others. The little girl stands holding a basket of flowers, while the little boy kneels in the foreground, feeding birds in a nest in his hat. Behind them a team is ploughing in the background to right.

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

18C Allegory of Spring - Love & Bird Nests

1785 Probably published in Britain. Here a young man is handing a birds' nest to a young woman. He has one hand on her shoulder as she accepts the nest.  She is collecting spring flowers in her apron. The couple is passing by another woman kneeling beside a basket of flowers and hold up a garland for the couple to see. Men are sowing grain in fields in the background to left.

Monday, April 12, 2021

17C Allegory of Spring - Love & Bird Nests

1600 Spring from The Four Seasons Jan Saenredam (Dutch printmaker, c 1565-1607) Here a young couple pick flowers & delight over tiny chicks in a bird nest.

Sunday, April 11, 2021

17C Allegories & Myths of Spring around a Garden

1600 From The Four Seasons; Martius, Aprilis, Maius published by Joan Baptista Vrints. A Spring Landscape with a man playing the lute accompanied by woman holding flowers in her hand; a boat on the water collecting branches; with farming and gardening activities in background.

In Pagan Rome, Floralia, from April 27-May 3 was the festival of the Flower Goddess Flora & the flowering of Springtime. Roman Catholic traditions of adoring statues of Mary with garlands of flowers on May 1 have Roman Pagan roots. On May 1, offerings were made to Bona Dea (as Mother Earth), the Lares (household guardian spirits), & Maia (Goddess of Increase) from whom May gets its name. On May 1, early cultures followed a pastoral tradition of turning sheep, cows, other livestock out to pasture. In early Scandinavia, mock battles between Winter & Summer were enacted at this time.

Fire is a common accompaniment to many May celebrations. Celebrants mark the holiday by lighting fires, dancing, feasting & often performing fertility rites. Many built a bonfire & then moved through it or danced clockwise around it. Livestock was driven around a Beltane fire or between 2 fires for purification & fertility blessings. In ancient times Druid priests kindled it at sacred places. In later times, Christian priests kindled their spring fires in fields near the church after peforming a Christian church service. Branches & twigs often were carried around these fire 3 times, then hung over hearths to bless homes.  Risk-takers made a wish for good luck before jumping a bonfire or the flame of a candle. Beltane may refer to the “fires of Bel,” in honor of the Celtic sun god, Belenus. Some pagans believe fire has the power to cleanse, purify & increase fertility.

Some believed during May the veil between the human & supernatural worlds is at its thinnest, making them potent days for magic.

Holding on to the Sweet Divine - “The Lord God took man & put him in the Garden of Eden to work it & to keep it.”  Genesis 2:15. 

Saturday, April 10, 2021

17C Spring - Flowers, Fertility, Sensuality, & Delight by Martin Droeshout 1601-1639

Martin Droeshout (British printmaker, 1601-c 1639) Spring

In Pagan Rome, the celebration of Floralia, from April 27-May 3 was the festival of the Flower Goddess Flora & the flowering of Springtime.  Holding on to the Sweet Divine - “The Lord God took man & put him in the Garden of Eden to work it & to keep it.”  Genesis 2:15. 

Friday, April 9, 2021

17C Spring Boating Parties - Making Music & Gathering Newly Green Branches

1660 Published by Matthew Collings; After Crispijn de Passe the Elder; After Maarten de Vos. May; boat with two couples collecting green branches, drinking, and making music.   The branches of new leaves decorating the boat celebrate the regeneration of spring & fertility.

Holding on to the Sweet Divine - “The Lord God took man & put him in the Garden of Eden to work it & to keep it.”  Genesis 2:15. 

Thursday, April 8, 2021

16C Spring Allegories - Birding & Tending Sheep

Sebastian Vrancx (Flemish artist, 1573-1647) Allegory of the Season Spring

Holding on to the Sweet Divine - “The Lord God took man & put him in the Garden of Eden to work it & to keep it.”  Genesis 2:15. 

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

17C Spring - Flowers, Fertility, Sensuality, & Delight.

1620 Lady as Spring, by Follower of Abraham Janssens, also called Abraham Janssens Van Nuyssen (Flemish, 1573-1632)

Spring brings flowers, fertility, sensuality, & delight.  Holding on to the Sweet Divine - “The Lord God took man & put him in the Garden of Eden to work it & to keep it.”  Genesis 2:15.  
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Tuesday, April 6, 2021

17C Spring Wenceslaus Hollar (1607-1677)

Wenceslaus Hollar (European-born English artist, 1607-1677) Duchess of Lennox as Spring. Spring refers to the ecological, environmental season, and also to ideas of rebirth, rejuvenation, renewal, resurrection & regrowth.

Holding on to the Sweet Divine - “The Lord God took man & put him in the Garden of Eden to work it & to keep it.”  Genesis 2:15.  

Monday, April 5, 2021

Jesus as Gardener - Christ Reveals Himself to Mary

1368-70, Probably by Jacopo di Cione(c 1325-after 1390) an Italian painter in the Republic of Florence. - Resurrection Noli me tangere.   Jesus holds a hoe.

The Gospel of John 20:1-13 (NIV) contains a narrative of an empty garden tomb including the appearance of Jesus:
Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb & saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. So she came running to Simon Peter & the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, & said, "They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, & we don't know where they have put him!" 
So Peter & the other disciple started for the tomb. Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter & reached the tomb first. He bent over & looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. Then Simon Peter, who was behind him, arrived & went into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the burial cloth that had been around Jesus' head. The cloth was folded up by itself, separate from the linen. Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw & believed. 
Then the disciples went back to their homes, but Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb & saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus' body had been, one at the head & the other at the foot. They asked her, "Woman, why are you crying?" "They have taken my Lord away," she said, "& I don't know where they have put him." At this, she turned around & saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus. He asked her, "Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?" Thinking he was the gardener, she said, "Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, & I will get him."  Jesus said to her, "Mary." She turned toward him & cried out, "Rabboni!" ("Teacher"). Jesus said, "Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, & say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, & your Father; & to my God, & your God." 
Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: "I have seen the Lord!" And she told them that he had said these things to her.
13C Fresco - in Lower Basilica in Assisi Noli Me Tangere

Giotto di Bondone (c. 1267 - 1337). Resurrection Noli me tangere - on North wall of Scrovegni (Arena) Chapel, Padua. 1305-1306
1460 The Meister des Göttinger Barfüßeraltars Resurrection Noli me tangere. Jesus holds a shovel. The wattle fenced flowery mead follows Boccaccio's model.
Fra Angelico, Noli Me Tangere 1440-42 Jesus and Mary Magdalene in a walled Garden
1460-90s Master of the Martyrdom of the Ten Thousand (German; 1460 - 1470; fl. c.) Christ appearing as a gardener to St Mary Magdalene within a garden with wattle fencing.Jesus holds a shovel.
1469 Noli me tangere in Prayer Book of Charles the Bold, Lieven van Lathem. J. Paul Getty Museum, Ms. 37, fol. 46v. Jesus holds a shovel in a wattle-fenced mead.
Martin Schongauer German, c. 1450-1491. Noli me tangere. Here Jesus holds a staff but the garden is surrounded by a wattle fence.
1473 Martin Schongauer (1450–1491) Noli Me Tangere. This garden appears to be enclosed with a wattle fence, and roses grow in the background. Birds perch in the trees.
c 1500 Perugino, Pietro di Cristoforo Vannucci 1445-1523) Resurrection Noli me tangere. Here Jesus holds a garden tool.
1506 Fra Bartolomeo (1472–1517) Noli Me Tangere. Depicted at the tomb with Christ holding a garden tool.
c 1500 by Master of the Chronique scandaleuse, illuminator (French, active about 1493 - 1510), Noli me tangere, French. Here Jesus & Mary Magdalene meet on a garden path.
1512 Titian (1490–1576) Noli Me Tangere. Christ appears holding a garden tool.
1500s Greek Icon Μη μου άπτου Crete Resurrection - Noli me tangere. Here Jesus & Mary Magdalene are in a flowery mead.
Alessandro Magnasco (Italian (Genoese), 1667 - 1749), Noli Me Tangere, Italian. Jesus with a hoe stands in a formal garden ground.
1526 Hans Holbein the Younger (1498–1543) Noli Me Tangere. Depicted at the tomb on a flowery mead.
1534 Antonio da Correggio (1489-1534) Noli Me Tangere. Christ appears as a gardener holding a hoe.

1539 Hans Baldung (c.1484 - 1545) Resurrection Noli me tangere.Jesus holds a garden shovel.
1548-53 Lambert Sustris (Dutch artist, c.1515-1520-c.1584) Noli Me Tangere
This image includes formal gardens used as the background for a Biblical scene. These gardens are primarily from the Italian Renaisance.  The trellis walkways & arbors were built to provide both shade & privacy. Planners raised beds to prevent plants becoming waterlogged. Gardens were used for recreation, relaxation, & sport. The garden consists of geometric beds of interlacing patterns designed to be seen from windows & hills above & is filled with herbs & favorite flowers. A fountain sits in the farthest parterre. Statues & symbolic ornaments are spread throughout the grounds.
1560-70 Unknown German artist. Christ appears here as a gardener to Mary Magdalene; part of a town beyond the garden & three crosses on the hill behind at left. Jesus holds a garden shovel in a bedded garden surrounded by a wooden fence.
Agnolo di Cosimo usually known as Bronzino or Agnolo Bronzino, Italian Mannerist painter, 1503-72) Resurrection, Noli Me Tangere Jesus holds a shovel, and a walled garden of flowers blooms just behind them.
1581 Lavinia Fontana Resurrection Noli me tangere. Jesus holds a shovel in a defined garden area.
1620 Abraham Janssens (1567–1632) painted figures & Jan Wildens (15841586–1653) painted the landscape Resurrection Noli me tangere.Jesus holds a shovel & the fruits of the garden are on the earth.
1630-35 Pedro Núñez del Valle (Spanish, 1597-1649)Noli me tangere. A garden of formal beds defined by a wattle wall appears to be growing food.
Ciro Ferri 1670-80s (1634-1689) Resurrection Noli me tangere. Jesus holds a shovel in a garden protected by a wood fence.

Sunday, April 4, 2021

The Angel said Fear not...He is Risen

Angel by Melozzo da Forli (Italian Renaissance artist, 1438-1494). Vatican Museums.

And the angel...said Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified. He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Matthew 28:5–6

Music-making Angel by Melozzo da Forli (Italian Renaissance artist, 1438-1494) from fresco paintings of the Basilica dei Santi Apostoli, the Vault of the Sacristy of Saint Mark. Vatican Museums.
Music-making Angel by Melozzo da Forli (Italian Renaissance artist, 1438-1494) from fresco paintings of the Basilica dei Santi Apostoli, the Vault of the Sacristy of Saint Mark. Vatican Museums.
Music-making Angel by Melozzo da Forli (Italian Renaissance artist, 1438-1494) from fresco paintings of the Basilica dei Santi Apostoli, the Vault of the Sacristy of Saint Mark. Vatican Museums.
Music-making Angel by Melozzo da Forli (Italian Renaissance artist, 1438-1494) from fresco paintings of the Basilica dei Santi Apostoli, the Vault of the Sacristy of Saint Mark. Vatican Museums.
Music-making Angel by Melozzo da Forli (Italian Renaissance artist, 1438-1494) from fresco paintings of the Basilica dei Santi Apostoli, the Vault of the Sacristy of Saint Mark. Vatican Museums.
Music-making Angel by Melozzo da Forli (Italian Renaissance artist, 1438-1494) from fresco paintings of the Basilica dei Santi Apostoli, the Vault of the Sacristy of Saint Mark. Vatican Museums.
Music-making Angel by Melozzo da Forli (Italian Renaissance artist, 1438-1494) from fresco paintings of the Basilica dei Santi Apostoli, the Vault of the Sacristy of Saint Mark. Vatican Museums.
Angel by Melozzo da Forli (Italian Renaissance artist, 1438-1494). Vatican Museums.

The Empty Tomb- Illuminated Manuscripts

British Library - Royal 19 A XXII fol-16 The Empty Tomb Resurrection, detail actually showing a garden
British Library - Harley 4328 fol-410 The Empty Tomb Resurrection
The Gospel of John 20 contains a narrative of an empty garden tomb including the appearance of Jesus:   
The Empty Tomb
Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. 

So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!”

In Christianity, the tomb of Jesus was found to be empty by the women who had come to anoint his body with spices & by pouring oils over it.  The empty tomb points to Jesus' resurrection, implicitly in the early Gospel of Mark & explicitly in the gospel narratives of Matthew, Luke & John. 

British Library - Add. MS 7170, fol-160 (detail) 1b - Syriac Lectionary Mosul (Iraq), 1216-1220 The Holy Women at the Empty Tomb - The Resurrection

For some people of antiquity, empty tombs were seen as signs of the dead person bodily entering heaven. In Chariton’s ancient Greek novel Callirhoe, the hero Chaereas finds his wife’s tomb empty & immediately assumes the gods took her. In Ancient Greek thinking, there are numerous examples of individuals conspiring, before their deaths, to have their remains hidden in order to promote postmortem veneration. Arrian wrote of Alexander the Great planning his own bodily disappearance, so that he would be revered as a god. Disappearances of individuals to the divine realm also occur in Jewish literature, but do not involve an empty tomb.

British Library - Additional 35254D-F fol-D The Empty Tomb - The Resurrection

A site in Jerusalem now called The Garden Tomb was unearthed in 1867 & is considered by some Christians to be the site of the burial & resurrection of Jesus. The tomb has been dated by prominent Israeli archaeologist Gabriel Barkay to the 8–7C BC. However, the re-use of old tombs was common practice in ancient burial rituals. The Garden Tomb is adjacent to a rocky escarpment which since the mid-19C has been proposed by some scholars to be Golgotha. The traditional site where the death & resurrection of Christ are believed to have occurred has been the Church of the Holy Sepulchre at least since the 4C.

British Library - Lansdowne 383 fol-13 Holy Women at the Empty Tomb
British Library - Royal 20 B IV fol-142 The Maries at the Empty Tomb
The St Albans Psalter, owned by St Godehard's Church, Hildesheim now at University of Aberdeen, Scotland Maries at the empty Tomb of Jesus.