Cardeña Beatus

Cardeña Beatus f. 9B, The angel with the fourth trumpet: the eclipse


f. 9B, The angel with the fourth trumpet: the eclipse

Branch II adopts Magius’ formula with the square divided into three bands, the format used in the Valcavado, Fernando I and Gerona (f. 153r) Beatus. The Gerona codex however includes a new element: two trees increasing to three in the San Pedro de Cardeña and the Rylands (f. 129r) Beatus, clear evidence of the source of inspiration for said later Beatus. The sun, moon and stars darkened on one third represent, according to the explanatio, the Church and its corrupt members. They sit in the top band upon a blue background that represents the firmament. The golden colour of the stars in the Cardeña Beatus contrasts with the white in the model. The eagle, with a crown in the Cardeña and Rylands codices, represents the church. Instead of appearing in flight as in the Gerona manuscript announcing imminent disasters upon the earth (which is suggested by trees and the colour brown), the eagle stands in front of the angel sounding the trumpet. The Arroyo Beatus (f. 95r) reflects a different source.

Ángela Franco Mata
Chief of the Medieval Antiquities Department, Museo Arqueológico Nacional
(Fragment of the Cardeña Beatus commentary volume)

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