The Worship of the Inscribed Tablet from the Cross

Object Details


The Worship of the Inscribed Tablet from the Cross


Simon Bening (Flemish, about 1483 - 1561)




Bruges, Belgium (Place Created)


about 1525 - 1530


Tempera colors, gold paint, and gold leaf on parchment

Object Number:

Ms. Ludwig IX 19, fol. 235v


Leaf: 16.8 × 11.4 cm (6 5/8 × 4 1/2 in.)

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Two angels hold up the tablet that Pilate ordered to be attached to the cross. According to the Gospel of John, it bore Christ's appellation, "Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews," in three languages: Hebrew, Greek, and Latin. On each side, an angel holds a candle and draws back the curtains to reveal the holy object. In the middle, another angel swings a censer, from which smoke flows toward the tablet. Conceiving the scene as a dramatic ritual presented to the beholder, Simon Bening thus singled out one of the objects from the Crucifixion for special worship.

Related Works
Shrine and Shroud: Textiles in Illuminated Manuscripts (June 28 to October 2, 2005)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), June 28 to October 2, 2005