Val-Dieu Apocalypse

f. 42v · The Dragon comes up again to attack the Holy City (Apoc. 20: 7-9) Val-Dieu Apocalypse, fourteenth century


f. 42v · The Dragon comes up again to attack the Holy City

After the thousand years have passed Satan, who is the great red Dragon, is loosed from the bottomless pit, represented here by the large animal's mouth in the bottom left of the picture. He gathers the nations together to attack the city of the saints. The Dragon and his army approach from the left to besiege the city within whose walls are a crowd of people, and before which fighting is taking place. From heaven flames come down to destroy the Dragon’s armies as well as those who are before the gates of the city. The iconography is almost identical in figure poses and groupings, weapons and architectural forms to that in the English Lambeth Apocalypse. The scene is set against a dull-green diaper ground, and the border bar linking the initials of the texts below terminates in foliate sprays stemming from the bodies of hybrids.

And when the thousand years shall be finished, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, and shall go forth and seduce the nations which are over the four quarters of the earth, Gog, and Magog, and shall gather them together to battle, the number of whom is as the sand of the sea. And they came upon the breadth of the earth and encompassed the camp of the saints and the beloved city. And there came down fire from heaven out of God, and devoured them.” (Apoc. 20: 7-9)

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