GHIBERTI, Lorenzo
(b. 1378, Firenze, d. 1455, Firenze)

The Story of Abraham

1425-52
Gilded bronze, 79 x 79 cm
Baptistry, Florence

Each panel of the Gates of Paradise depicts several episodes of a biblical narrative. This panel depicts the Story of Abraham. Here Ghiberti dissolved the background to lead our eye beyond the slender trunks of trees to the distant hills against the sky. The Old testament story prefigures the New, for the sacrifice of Isaac appears in the background as a foreshadowing of the sacrifice of Christ. The three angels appearing to Abraham are a revelation of the Trinity, and the meal prepared by Sarah prophesies the establishment of the Eucharist.