Flemish Apocalypse

Flemish Apocalypse f. 12r, The measuring of the temple, the death and ascension of the two witnesses, the Antichrist and the seventh trumpet

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f. 12r, The measuring of the temple, the death and ascension of the two witnesses, the Antichrist and the seventh trumpet

This miniature overflows with scenes. In the upper left corner, John receives the measuring rod from Christ, who vomits fire upon a group of four people beneath him. Six of the twenty-four ancients float in the clouds to his left. They wear crowns and pray to Christ in adoration. In the upper right of the miniature John throws a man over the wall of the court outside the temple. The meaning of verse 2 is that the court must not be measured, but the text was copied wrong and reads “he who is outside the temple should be thrown out”, which is exactly what John does. The man being thrown out might be an infidel or a Jew; the soft hat he wears is not exclusive to either group. Again, on the left side, the story of the two witnesses is narrated in a number of scenes. The two witnesses are killed in the lower left corner and one witness lies beheaded. His blindfolded head is severed from his body from which blood flows. After being brutally murdered, the two witnesses ascend to heaven. During their ascension, an earthquake destroys the city. In the middle of the miniature, the Antichrist stands amongst a group of followers. He is dressed in a high-belted, long, blue garment with side vents and an ermine shoulder cape. His head-dress ends in a curl and has a sculpted border of ermine. The fire from the mouth of Christ falls down upon the man behind the Antichrist.


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