BOSCH, Hieronymus
(b. ca. 1450, 's-Hertogenbosch, d. 1516, 's-Hertogenbosch)

Tiptych of Temptation of St Anthony (outer wings)

1505-06
Grisaille on panel, 131 x 53 cm
Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga, Lisbon

The outer wings of the triptych represent the Arrest of Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane (left wing) and Christ Carrying the Cross (right wing).

It is most appropriate, that Anthony's sufferings are echoed on the exterior of the altarpiece in two grisaille scenes from Christ's Passion. On the left, soldiers overwhelm Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane as viciously as the devils attack Anthony on the reverse, while Judas hurriedly steals away with his thirty pieces of silver. In the other panel, Christ's collapse beneath the weight of his Cross has halted the procession to Golgotha, allowing St Veronica to wipe the sweat from the Saviour's face. The executioners can hardly restrain their impatience at this delay, and the bystanders look on more with idle curiosity than with sympathy Below, the two thieves confess to hooded friars whose disreputable characters have been deftly portrayed.