The Temple with the Ark of Alliance and the beast arising from the abyss
The illustration, usually square in shape, is divided into two parts in line with the commentary itself. The top part depicts the open temple (templum apertum) with the Ark inside, symbolizing the manifestation of Christ to the Church, penetrated by the path of prophesy. The temple is seen from two angles. The Ark stands out inside like a medieval relic on four legs.
The beast arises from the abyss (bestia ascendens de abisso) mentioned in relation to the death of the two witnesses and is identified with the Antichrist. The beast is depicted in different ways according to the codices: the one in the Silos Beatus having horns and a mane suggesting a lion. Its long body is supported by powerful legs ending in hooves. The end of its tail with a dotted, oval form at the end seems to come alive. It walks towards the left with its mouth open roaring loudly.
Ángela Franco Mata
Head of Department of Medieval Antiquities
Museo Arqueológico Nacional
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