Saturday, January 19, 2008

Monster Brains Presents, The Mouth Of Hell..
The following paintings, sculptures, engravings and other mediums from centuries past will explore the theme of the mouth of hell. From paintings of Christ in Limbo, The Harrowing of Hell, The Last Judgement, to decorative sculptures showing the hell mouth on display in various churches across Europe, there are many unique and bizarre depictions of this monstrous portal into the inferno.

Last Judgement window, Cathedral Saint-Etienne de Bourges. More pictures of the window can be found here.

Right panel from the Triptych of Earthly Vanity, Hans Memling, 1485.

Here's a link to another Doom painting, and another Hell Mouth.

I haven't seen many sites online focused on the Hell Mouth but I did find this page with a nice variety of photographs, although small, showing various Doom paintings and other works related to the Hell Mouth motif. The Ecclesiological Society, Dooms and the mouth of hell in the late medieval period.

This wraps up the weeklong post on one of my favroite motifs in art. If you dig through the archives here I'm sure you'll find numerous paintings featuring the mouth of hell that I didn't bring up. If you know of any works not mentioned here I'd love to see them, please leave any related links in the comments, thank you!

More Scenes Of Last Judgement

Details unknown, image located at the Duke Art Museum.

Klontzas 1540-1608, Georgios, Greek-Last Judgment (detail)

Detail of the Last Judgement located at Sillegny - Eglise Saint Martin. See the full painting here.

15th century Doom painting located at North Leigh, Oxfordshire.

"Mohammed is depicted in the center of this painting, with his face covered. The painting is also called "The Day of the Last Judgment"; signed by the artist Mohammad Modabber, from 1897. In the Sa'd-Abad Cultural Collection (Iran)." - quote source.

"The Day of the Last Judgment, painting attributed to artist Mohammad Modabber - undated, but likely from the late 19th century. In the Reza Abbasi Museum Collection (Iran). Mohammed is depicted in this painting at the upper right, riding on a camel." - quote source.

Painting located at the Church of Oja in Gotland, Sweden.

Wall painting at the Madonna dei Martiri, Italy

"The dream of Philipp " Greco 1541-1614, El, Fodele Kreta

Friday, January 18, 2008

The Last Judgement

source unknown

source unknown

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"The History of the Virgin and Christ" by the Delli brothers, dated 1440-45. Work located at the old cathedral of Salamanca, Spain.

Last Judgement fresco, see the full painting here.

15th century Doom painting South Leigh, Oxfordshire. View more of the painting here.

Part of the 15th century Doom painting at Combe, Oxfordshire. See more of the painting here.

St Thomas Salisbury, 15th century

Niedersachsen, Laurentiuskirche vaults

Loose icon in Gelati Monastery.

Castle of Zvolen, 17th century.

The Doom, St Peter's Church, Wenhaston, Suffolk, see the full doom painting here.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

More HellMouth Illustrations

From the French 15th century Hours of Catherine of Cleves.

French diablerie, late 15th century.

Angel fastening the Jaws of Hell. From the twelfth-century Winchester Psalter.

St Bartholomew giving a scourge to Guthlac as he is tormented by demons in 'The Guthlac Roll' Ink and pigments on vellum, 13th century.

Political cartoon from 1799.

Miniature of the Fall of Lucifer and the rebel angels.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

The Harrowing of Hell

"The Harrowing of Hell is a doctrine in Christian theology referenced in the Apostles' Creed and the Athanasian Creed (Quicumque vult), which states that Jesus "descended into Hell". It has been termed the most controversial phrase in the Apostle's Creed.

The original Greek wording in the Apostles' Creed is κατελθόντα εἰς τὰ κατώτατα, ("katelthonta eis ta katôtata"), and in Latin descendit ad inferos. The Greek τὰ κατώτατα ("the lowest") and the Latin inferos ("those below") may also be translated as "underworld", "netherworld", or as "abode of the dead". Thus, sometimes this phrase is translated as "descended to the dead." The first use of the English "harrowing" in this context is in homilies of Aelfric, ca.1000. Harrow is a by-form of harry, a military term meaning to "make predatory raids or incursions". The term "Harrowing of Hell" refers not merely to the idea that Christ descended into Hell, as in the Creed, but to the rich tradition that developed later, asserting that he triumphed over inferos, releasing Hell's captives, particularly Adam and Eve, and the righteous men and women whose stories are recorded in the Septuagint." - quote source

Harrowing of Hell, Chiesa Matrice, Castelbuono

"Harrowing of Hell, and Christ, Thomas and Mary Magdalene, in The Winchester Psalter" Ink and pigments on vellum, 12th century. Sources for the following illuminations are unknown.

Illuminations Of The Hell Mouth

These illuminations all date between the 12th - 16th century and show themes of the Last Judgement and Fall of the Rebel Angels.