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The Ghent Altarpiece: Adoration of the Mystic Lamb

Jan van Eyck1432

Lukas - Art in Flanders

Lukas - Art in Flanders
Gent, Belgium

The viewer's full attention is drawn to the large centre panel, in which a divine liturgy is performed around the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ, in a green landscape with a high horizon. an altar stands in the middle on a small green mound, possibly representing Mount Zion. the Lamb stands erect on the altar - alive but bleeding from a wound. It's blood spurts out into a chalice. The allusion is clear - Christ's death and ressurection - his sacrifice for humanity - are commemorated on the altar during every Mass. the scene as a whole referst to the Last supper when Jesus described the wine as his blood, which he was to shed for all humanity to earn the forgiveness of its sins.

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