GOES, Hugo van der
(b. ca. 1440, Ghent, d. 1482, Bruxelles)
Calvary Triptych (detail)1465-68
Oil on wood
Cathedral of St Bavo, Ghent
The right wing depicts the episode of the brazen serpent. The people of Israel are marching through a steep-sided valley. Moses has climbed up onto a rocky promontory above them, his stick in one hand. There he complains to Jehovah that the people will not obey him any more, whereupon Jehovah turns his stick into a snake before the eyes of the astonished crowd. The people of Israel, saved by Moses, are used here to prefigure the destiny of the Christian Church, whose people have been saved by Christ.