Relationship between biblical text and visual traditions

To think about the relationship between the Biblical text and the visual traditions of the Middle
Ages in terms of both art and architecture. We had an opportunity to reference the authors of
the Bible as they have been identified by tradition. The Bible is considered to be the authentic
word of God but it was composed and written by human agents, whose authority derived from
the claim made that they worked under the influence of the deity.
And many of the books of the Bible bear the name of the authors who composed them: such as
the long run of the books of the Prophets — Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Daniel and so on – and
the Gospels – Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. The first five books of the Bible are commonly
attributed to Moses. The Apocalypse is attributed to John. All of these books bear the stamp of
the individual characteristics of their human authors.
This assignment is to write about The Gospel According to Saint John of the Bible from the point
of view of the author who wrote it: (critical evaluation)
–How does the author come across in his writing?
–How would you describe the author’s style?
–What are the major subjects and themes that he treats?
–How would you describe his point of view?
–Check an image of how the author was visualized in the Middle Ages (if there were portraits of
him made). Do these images help characterize the author in any way?
–You can do whatever research you want on the author that you select. (ex. biographies)
Depending on what book you choose, For example, Isaiah was carved into the pillar in the middle of the
portal at Moissac; David was depicted as king in the Paris Psalter; the four Gospel writers have symbols
attached to them. Many of the prophets were portrayed and of course the Gospel writers were shown
often and in different contexts, sometimes with the source of divine inspiration depicted above them
The transformation of water into wine at the Marriage at Cana or Wedding at Cana
is the first miracle attributed to Jesus in the Gospel of John.
Two examples images of John (choose one or you can find by yourself)
Couple, unidentified. Hours, miniature, column, margins, fol. 7r, Detail. early 16c.. Artstor,
unknown French (illuminator). Book of Hours (Horae Beatae Mariae Virginis, cum Calendario),
Folio 16r: Gospel Lessons: Saint John, overall. c.1470 (creation date). Artstor
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