Adam and Eve in the western and Byzantine art of the Middle Ages [Elektronische Ressource] / vorgelegt von Vasiliki V. Mavroska

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ADAM AND EVE IN THE WESTERN AND BYZANTINE ART OF THE MIDDLE AGES Inauguraldissertation zur Erlangung eines Doktors der Philosophie im Fachbereich Sprach- und Kulturwissenschaften der Johann- Wolfgang- Goethe Universität zu Frankfurt am Main vorgelegt von Vasiliki V. Mavroska 2009 To our Mum PREFACE The pictorial art of the Church, as a spiritual product of the Christian civilisation, has continually received great influences from its ecclesiastical tradition and it was defined by its formal aesthetical standards and its iconographic preferences. A more nuanced reading of the parallels can be attained by placing the images in their visual context, which would allow a better appreciation of the meanings within. The biblical story of Adam and Eve, which is the theme of the following thesis, reflects the differentiation between the Eastern and the Western understanding of the events of the history of the holy Oikonomia, a point, which is the major ground for the development of the relative pictorial motifs. The protoplasts are the protagonists from their creation and life in paradise, the fall and expulsion until their resurrection through Christ. Their story is visualised in a number of scenes and episodes, having thus their original sin and resurrection for specific reasons centralised.

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ADAM AND EVE
IN THE WESTERN AND BYZANTINE ART
OF THE MIDDLE AGES




Inauguraldissertation
zur Erlangung eines Doktors der Philosophie
im Fachbereich Sprach- und Kulturwissenschaften
der Johann- Wolfgang- Goethe Universität
zu Frankfurt am Main





vorgelegt von
Vasiliki V. Mavroska

2009






To
our Mum




PREFACE


The pictorial art of the Church, as a spiritual product of the Christian
civilisation, has continually received great influences from its ecclesiastical
tradition and it was defined by its formal aesthetical standards and its
iconographic preferences. A more nuanced reading of the parallels can be
attained by placing the images in their visual context, which would allow a
better appreciation of the meanings within.
The biblical story of Adam and Eve, which is the theme of the following
thesis, reflects the differentiation between the Eastern and the Western
understanding of the events of the history of the holy Oikonomia, a point, which
is the major ground for the development of the relative pictorial motifs. The
protoplasts are the protagonists from their creation and life in paradise, the fall
and expulsion until their resurrection through Christ. Their story is visualised in
a number of scenes and episodes, having thus their original sin and resurrection
for specific reasons centralised.
This doctoral thesis attempts to collect as many parallels of the scenes is
possible, trying to collate the Eastern with the Western visual approach in a
deductive way, in order to reach our constructive conclusions and make
available the combination of the art, theology and liturgy in the scenes of Adam
and Eve in Genesis and in Anastasis. The reading we tried to perform was
based upon the specific iconographical elements, which were worth to be
commented. Our aim was to detect the direct bond between the production of
art and the relevant patristic and apocryphal writings or even the theological
theories, by quoting texts from the ecclesiastical literature, as well as the
liturgical praxis.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS


First and foremost, I wish to express my very warm gratitude to my
supervisor Prof. Dr. Martin Büchsel, who accepted me to be a member of his
doctoral- students- team, placed reliance on me for executing the aim of the
thesis and forced me to think more critical and to examine every dimension of
the scenes. Much was it to be learned from the meetings with Prof. Büchsel, in
order to make a definite demarcation of the topic and contexts and to form the
way of the ratiocination we would like to present. To Prof. Dr. Aurenhammer,
the second examiner of my thesis, I send my thankfulness for examining the
text and supporting me at the final procedure.
I want to state my gratefulness to Prof. Dr. Dr. Despo Lialiou for
supporting me in my willingness to be a doctorate student abroad and for her
patience advising me about the theological aspects of my thesis.
I would like to show my appreciation to those, who helped me to beat
my work into the final shape, albeit not always in the scientific field. Primarily,
His Eminence Metropolitan of Germany Augustine gave his permission to my
staying in Bonn, as many times as it was necessary, and he accepted me there
with the paternal kindness, which always characterises him. By all means, I
want to convey my thankfulness to Bishop of Arianzus, Bartholomaios Kessidis
and to Vicar- General Fr. Ambrose Koutsouridis for their patient, considerate
affability and the most affectionate approach I have ever met in my life. To my
friend Dr. Constantine Vliagoftis I declare my thanks for his assistance in
various cases during my stay in Bonn and also to Fr. Constantine Miron, who
always has had some books or thoughts to add to my thesis.
Nor should it be forgotten the support of my friends, who always listen
to my brainstorming and thoughts, even though the most of them do not
associate themselves with the specific fields. Thus, I send my truly thanks to
my friends Magda Delbizi, Helen Tsila, Eleutheria and Fenia Vasileiou,
Katerina Kotzari, Simela Karagianni, Lampros Iskos, Dr. Zoi Malamoussi, as
well as to Assistant Prof. Dr. Constantine Bozinis and especially Dimosthenis Kaklamanos and Fotini Koutsampasi for their assistance in theological or
practical aspects, not always concerning in particular my doctoral thesis.

My more special thanks to Maria Papadopoulou and her husband
Ioannis Skarparis. Without their hospitality in Frankfurt am Main the present
dissertation would not have been finished. I would never forget the warm
welcome abroad, coming from them and from a number of people, who I met in
the parish of Prophet Elias. They supported me with their friendliest way, as if
they knew me for years.
Last, but unquestionably not least, I feel like expressing my deepest love
to my sister, Helen Mavroska and mostly to our mum, Magdalini Mavroska, to
whom we, my sister and me, can rely on, whenever it is needed. The respect
and fondness, I feel for her, are probably inexpressible, but what I can put into
words it is that to her I owe my personality and status, things that I am totally
grateful for.

V. M.
th11 of June 2009
CONTEXTS


INTRODUCTION 8

PART A: Genesis
A. Theological definition of creation 18
B. The origins of the scenes of creation 46
C. Iconographic Genesis recensions 55
D. Iconographic analysis of Genesis scenes: 70
i. The Creator 70
ii. Adam's creation 80
iii. Adam's introduction into paradise 88
iv. Naming of the animals 92
v. Eve's creation 100
vi. Introduction of Adam and Eve
into paradise- Admonition 114
vii. The original sin 118
viii. The punishment 145
ix. The expulsion 153
x. The labours 160


PART B: Anastasis (Descent into Hades)
A. Theological definition of Anastasis 168
B. Liturgical definition of Anastasis 172
C. Iconographic analysis of the Anastasis scene 187

APPENDIX: Visual language on the protoplasts´ story
i. Adamic typology 215 ii. The impact of the liturgical act on the Genesis cycle 225
iii. The impact of the social or historical
circumstances on the Genesis cycle 236
iv. Manuscripts 240
v. Image and likeness in art 243
vi. Body-gestural language 246

CONCLUSIONS 250
BIBLIOGRAPHY 255
ILLUSTRATIONS 310
7

INTRODUCTION


According to the patristic hermeneutics, man has been created by God,
without being asked, meaning his freedom is not a simple freedom of choice
and an independent way of living. It is actual the natural power that man has in
order to accept his created limits, his nature, and his possibility to achieve the
1likeness of God, always energetically dependent upon the grace of God .
The one, who acts through the theophanies in the name of the Holy
Trinity in the Old Testament and simultaneously reveals God, is the unfleshed
Logos of God. He is the one who incarnates himself in the period of the New
Testament and through his entrance in the created world the theosis of people
2obtained a potential energy and a positive possibility .
The beginning of the story of the holy Oikonomia is the creation of the
3world, whose part is the creation of the human beings. Adam and Eve , the

1. Lialiou, 2008, pp. 27- 9.
2
. The creation is based on the revelation of God, meaning a theophany. See about the
theophanies in Israel and in the Church Matsoukas, 1992, pp. 58-65, and about the action of
Logos ibid., pp. 67- 74. Also see Matsoukas, 1997, pp. 118- 27.
3
. Adam comes from the Jewish "Adama", which is interpreted as earth (Kazhdam P.
A, Talbot A., Gregory E. T., 1991, p. 18, ΘHE, Ἀδάμ, 1962, pp. 369- 70, Kittel, 1953, pp. 141-
2). The etymology of the name ADAM also includes the initial of the four quarters of the earth;
Aνατολή, Δύση, Άρκτος, Mεσημβρία, Demus, vol. 1, 1984, p. 259. For the word Adam see in
Enclyclopedia of Early Christianity, 1997, pp. 18- 9 and for Eve ibid, pp. 407- 8. Also see
comments on the anthology of the Genesis story based on Jewish, Christian and Muslim
readings as presented on a book review, Castelli, 1999, p. 262 and Stone, 2000, p. 206). Earth is
the material that God has used in order to create the first human being, Adam. That is probably
why the word Adam has also the meanings of man and human being. The same interpretation
has the "Adam's sons" (υἱοὶ Ἀδάμ) and often is used instead of the word man (See "Aδάμ" in
Λεξικό Bιβλικής Θεολογίας, 1980, p. 30. In some occasion it is used the words "sons of men"
in the Greek translation (Yἱοί ἀνθρώπων), which in the Jewish text is similar to the "sons of
Adam". See Gen 11, 5, Iob 25, 6, Ps 8, 5, Prou 8, 31, Ps 43, 3, Regn III 8, 39, Ps 32, 13, Ier 39,
19). Moreover, in the Gnostic tradition the name Adam is the true, perfect man, the first Aeon of
light. That idea comes from the Apocryphal of John where Adam is not connected totally with
earth, but with light and the heavenly nature of man (Giversen, 1963, p. 69). According to the
8 protoplasts, and their life in and out of paradise, especially their original sin,
were constantly principal topics in the theological thought, the patristic
exegesis, the literature and art. The present doctoral thesis is written in order to
enlighten the individual pictorial features of the Genesis scenes, where the
protoplasts take part in, as well as the scene of the Resurrection.
The story of Adam and Eve directly explains the grounds of the
compulsory Redemption through the incarnated Logos of God. The moral
responsibility of the protoplasts and the theme of obedience and disobedience,
the human choices in other words, were essential especially for the western
theological way of thinking. On the contrary, according to the eastern patristic
writings, the fall was just an event, though a significant one, within the mystery
of the history of the holy Oikonomia, meaning that the incarnation of the
fleshless Logos was not an obligatory event, but it was already planned in God's
1mind already from the first day of creation . Thus, it will be demonstrated that
2the widespread depictions of the Old Testament cycle , and particularly the
story of creation, is an attribute of the Early Christian and Western medieval
church imagery, but not a Byzantine feature.
3 thThe extant illuminated scripture manuscripts before the 9 c. are
limited in single books, such as the Gospels or the Pentateuch, but not the
complete Bible. The early examples have drawings spread between the text, at
ththe top or at the bottom of the pages. Gradually from the 9 c. a full- page

text, Adam was created good and fair. Yet, he maintained neither his communion with God nor
his stay in the perfect Garden of Eden. Loss of grace, vanity (Barrett, 1962, p. 13), corruption
(Rom 8, 20) and death (Rom 6, 23. cf. Barrett, 1962, pp. 8- 9) were the results of the fall.
Significantly, Adam is the first who has broken God's will, somebody else had to provide to the
human nature a new dimension. That was Christ, who came to redeem the fall and to deify man
(A complete analysis of the first and second Adam there is in the Appendix).
1. For the different approach of the Eastern and Western tradition about the original sin
see Matsoukas, 1992, pp. 202- 16, Matsoukas, 1997, pp. 214- 6.
2
. A discription of the typology and the iconography of the protoplasts on a whole see
Lexikon der christlischen Ikonographie, 1968, pp. 42- 57. It is interesting to see the instructions
of Dionysios of Fourna (monk and iconographer in Mount Athos, 1670- 1746) of the way that
the scenes should be illustrated by the Orthodox hagiographers (Dionysios of Fourna, 2007, pp.
86- 8).
3. For the history and the production of manuscripts see Diringer, 1955, pp. 24ff. For
th
the importance for the miniatures of the 12 c. see Garrison, 1952, pp. 1- 34.
9 1miniature system is advanced , such as the Touronian Bibles, whose Genesis
frontispieces we examine in detail in each chapter. In other frontispieces, such
as in Arsenal Old Testament, the pictorial translation of the word Pantocrator is
a significant point. The meaning of Pantocrator is signified not only by his
depiction as the Creator, but also by the focus on his role as the Creator of
Cosmos, of all the living things, as the Giver of the covenant to man and as the
2Judge .
thFrom the 12 onwards an extreme boost of the illuminated manuscripts
3of creation occurred in Northern Europe . That production demonstrates the
extensive interest on the creation theories, which either represent the old
theological attitude or the new one. The actual goal of the humankind is the
redemption, in which the Church plays an essential role. In the western society
of the Middle Ages the account of Genesis was in some way engaged with the
authority of the Church and its responsibility for salvation. That determination
of the power of the Church penetrated in the faith of the believers also through
the religious art. Therefore, the art of the creation scenes gives the grounds for
4its stylistic options, based on the theological thought .
thThe traditional theology was impugned from the 12 c. onwards by the
theologians and philosophers. They supported that the old theological thinking
was only empirical or simply blind faith and it was combined with the
5monopoly of the Church over the society . Moreover, the creation was the main

1
. Kessler, 1971, p. 143. For the beginning of book illumination see Nordenfalk, 1992.
2. Weiss, 1998, p. 156. For the iconography of Pantocrator, its pictorial background
and its development in Byzantine art see Capizzi, 1964, passim.
3 th
. Particularly, the 11 c. there are only 7 manuscripts with miniatures of the creation,
th thon the 12 c. there are almost 61 and 233 on the 13 c. Cf. Rudolph, 1999, p. 29.
4. Rudolph, 1999, p. 4.
5 th
. At the beginning of the 12 c. the financial development in the West brought the
requirement for more education and social progress. Simultaneously a struggle started to take
place concerning the philosophical concerns and the role of logica in the theology. Indivisible
relationship with the logic in thought has the classical culture, meaning the learning of the
Aristotelian and the platonic philosophy. The new theology, represented mostly by French
scholastic philosophers/ theologians, with Peter Abelard (1079- 1142) as the most important
figure, focused on the classical literature and the platonic thoughts on cosmology. The
representatives of the old theological attitude, Bernard of Clairvaux, a French abbot, mystic of
the Cistercian monastery of Cîteaux and a powerful clerical politician (1090- 1153) and
William of Champeaux, French philosopher and theologian and maybe the worst enemy of
10