Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Annunciation: Gabriel to Zacharias

Niccolo di Giacomo (c. 1325 – c. 1403) (known also as Niccolò da Bologna)
Gabriel announces to Zacharias
From Missal said to be of Clément VII and Urban V
Tempera, gold, and ink on parchment
c. 1370
Avignon - BM - ms. 0136, f. 245

This is the miniature in the initial "N" in the Introit for the Vigil for the Birth of St John the Baptist in a Missal for Pope Urban V and which then came into the possession of the antipope Clement VII

The Introit is an extract of Luke 1: 13

The work is that of the Italian miniaturist Niccolo di Giacomo (c. 1325 – c. 1403) (known also as Niccolò da Bologna)

The same subject is seen in the following works:

Gabriel announces to Zacharias from the initial "F" in the Gospel of Luke 
From Walafrid  Strabo Gloss on the Gospel of Luke 
Ink on parchment
c. Middle 12th century
Cambrai - BM - ms. 0344, f. 003

Walafrid Strabo (or Strabus, i.e. "squint-eyed") (c. 808 – 18 August 849), was a Frankish monk poet and theological writer.

Of his prose-works the most famous is the "Glossa ordinaria," a commentary on the Scriptures, compiled from various sources. The work enjoyed the highest repute throughout the Middle Ages.

Andrea Pisano c 1290 - post 1348
Annuncio della nascita di San Giovanni Battista a Zaccaria
c. 1316
From The South Doors, Florence Baptistry
Gilded bronze panel, 
60 x 54 cm
The Baptistry of the Duomo, Florence

Of the three world-famed bronze doors of the Baptistery in Florence, the earliest one that on the south side was Pisano's work; he started it in 1330, finishing in 1336. 

In 1340 he succeeded Giotto as Master of the Works of Florence Cathedral

Hubert Cailleau (c. 1526–1590)
Gabriel announces to Zacharias from the initial "I" in the Nativity of St John the Baptist in the Gospel of Luke 
From Antiphonaire à l'usage de l'abbaye Sainte-Rictrude de Marchiennes
Douai - BM - ms. 0121, f. 204

Hubert Cailleau (c. 1526–1590), was a French historical and miniature painter and stage designer, who flourished at Valenciennes.

Cailleau produced a number of rich works for the Abbey Saint-Rictrude

On one of the books he produced he wrote:
« Ce livre que fit faire don Jacques le Grandt, abbé de Mânes (Marchiennes), fut illuminé à Valenciennes par moi, Hubert Cailleau, au dernier an de mon adolescence»

Chapter 1 of Luke presents parallel scenes (diptychs) of angelic announcements of the birth of John the Baptist and of Jesus, and of the birth, circumcision, and presentation of John and Jesus. 

In this parallelism, the ascendency of Jesus over John is stressed: John is prophet of the Most High (Lk 1:76); Jesus is Son of the Most High (Lk 1:32). John is great in the sight of the Lord (Lk 1:15); Jesus will be Great (an attribute, used absolutely, of God) (Lk 1:32). John will go before the Lord (Lk 1:16–17); Jesus will be Lord (Lk 1:43; 2:11).