Late Antique (Christian)
replicas: from the British Museum, London
date of the originals: early 5th century A.D.
provenance of the originals: now in the British Museum, London
description: Two of four panels from a casket depicting Christian religious themes. Resin replicas; ivory originals. Each: height 7.5 cm, width 10 cm, depth 1.5 cm.
Condemnation of Christ and the Denial of St. Peter (top)
A continuous account of the events surrounding Christ’s condemnation are cleverly squeezed into a narrow space: Pilate washes his hands to the left, Christ carries the cross in the center, and Peter, with rooster perched above him, denies Christ, a woman pointing accusingly at him.
Death of Judas and the Crucifixion of Christ (bottom)
This panel contains one of the earliest known depictions of the crucifixion of Christ. Mary and John stand to the left of the cross, a Roman soldier to the right. On the far left of the panel, Judas hangs himself. The cross and the tree are clearly out of proportion to the size of the figures. A correct representation would have required excessive, undesirable shortening of the characters because of the restricted space.