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Follower of Maerten de Vos
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Follower of Maerten de Vos

An Allegory of Christian life

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Follower of Maerten de Vos
An Allegory of Christian life
inscribed (strengthened) GOD.HEEFT.ONS.VERGHEVE.ALE.SODEN.EDE.TE NIET GEMAECT.DAT.HANTSCHRIFT. DOER.SCRIFTELYCKE/ISETTINGHE. BEWESE.DAE.WELCKE TEGE.ONS.WAS /ED HEEFT.DAT.MIDDE.WT.ONS. GEDAN.EDEAEN./DAT.CRUYS.GHEHECHT.COLOSSE. on the scroll on the Crucifix and inscribed CHRISTUS on the pedestal lower centre
oil on canvas
117.6 x 151.7 cm
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Christie's charge a buyer's premium of 20.825% of the hammer price for lots with values up to NLG 200,000. If the hammer price exceeds the NLG 200,000 then the premium is calculated at 20.825% of the first NLG 200,000 plus 11.9% of any amount in excess of NLG 200,000.

Lot Essay

The composition derives from an engraving after Maerten de Vos (Hollstein, 1199/1); here the Miles Christianus has been replaced by a woman perhaps intended as the Personification of the Militia Christiana; she stands in the centre holding a sword in her right hand and a shield with the red cross of the order of the Knights of Malta in her left hand. She is standing on a grave stone symbolizing Golgotha; above is the dove of the Holy Spirit, and the Cross behind her, which represents Christs' sacrifice by which he redeemed the sins of the world. This is made clear by the quotation from St Paul's epistle to the Colossians visible on the document attached to the Cross. On either side of the central figure are devils from Hell, which recall those by Hieronymus Bosch; these symbolize the lusts and the sins which threaten the Christians. Among these creatures is Mundus seated on the monster with the four heads as was seen by John in the Apocalypse.
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