Hans Memling ca. 1430 – 1494
Scenes from the Passion of Christ
oil on panel (57 × 92 cm) — 1470-71 Galleria Sabauda, Turin
Memling combined all passages from the Passion into one painting, adding the Resurrection and three appearances, creating a total of 23 scenes on one small panel. The praying figures in the lower corners are probably Tommaso Portinari, a Florentine banker in Bruges who commissioned the painting, and his wife.
The story of Jesus’ last hours begins far left in the corner with his entry into Jerusalem, then winds its way through town into the Garden of Gethsemane, bottom left, to continue in the middle, where we see Jesus brought before Pilate and the Scourging, only to leave town and to end with the Crucifixion on the Mount behind the city. After Christ’s death and resurrection he appears a number of times.
1. Entry into Jerusalem.
2. Jesus scourges the moneychangers from the temple.
3. Jude betrayes Jesus.
4. The Last Supper.
5. Prayer in the garden of Gethsemane. The apostles are sleeping.
6. The Romans take Jesus captive. Peter manages to cut off the ear of one of the attackers.
7. Peter denies Jesus three times before the cock crows.
8. Jesus before Pilate.
9. Flagellation of the naked Jesus.
10. Second interrogation by Pilate.
11. Jesus receives a crown with thorns and a purple robe to mock his presumed title of King of the Jews.
12. Ecce homo; behold the man.
13. Carpenters make a cross.
14. Carrying the cross. Jesus trips; Simon of Cyrene bears the cross.
15. Jesus is nailed to the cross.
16. Jesus crucified, hanging between two criminals, on Mount Golgotha.
17. The Deposition. At night Christ is taken from the cross.
18. The Entombment.
19. Christ in limbo.
20. The Resurrection. The soldiers are sleeping.
21. Noli me tangere: meeting Mary Magdalene.
22. Walking to Emmaus.
23. The appearance before the apostles at the Sea of Galilee.