The Apocalypse of 1313

The Apocalypse of 1313 f. 11v, The open door in heaven (Revelation 4: 1-5)

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f. 11v, The open door in heaven (Revelation 4: 1-5)

This rainbow, shown here as a shining, gold arch with several concentric, coloured lines (orange, blue, ochre, green and white), was a gift from God to Noah after the flood as a sign of peace. Whilst the ark sails on, Noah reaches his arms out to Christ descending from heaven to show him this visible sign of the first covenant entered into with the humanity brought back to life by the deadly waters. The dove bearing a branch of foliage, a symbol of hope, lands on the roof of the ark whilst, upon a rock rising above the stormy waves, the crow hurls itself at the dead body of a fox using the iconography borrowed from the well-known scene in Roman de Renart in which the crafty creature feigns death to attract the birds.

Marie-Thérèse Gousset and Marianne Besseyre
Illuminated Manuscripts Research Center, Bibliothèque nationale de France
Fragment of the Apocalypse of 1313 commentary volume


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