(b. 1431, Isola di Carturo, d. 1506, Mantova)


Tempera on panel, 67 x 93 cm
Musée du Louvre, Paris

The painting formed the central panel of the predella of the San Zeno Polyptych. The three original predella panels are now in France (in Paris and Tours), they were appropriated as war booty during the Napoleonic war. In Verona, the predella panels were replaced by canvas copies during the 19th century.

The scene takes place on a cracked rocky plateau on Golgotha. The place of execution is marked by holes in the rock, that had already been used for other crosses. At the foot of Christ's cross lies the skull of Adam, the first man. According to legend, Adam's grave was at Calvary and was exposed by the earthquake when Christ died.

Suggested listening (streaming mp3, 3 minutes):
Guillaume Dufay: Hymn for Easter