THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH

Possibly the world's most popular inclination, the impulse to export your suffering to another seems to be near-universal. Not confined to any race, sex, or age category, the impulse to cause pain appears to well up from deep inside human beings. This is mysterious, because no one seems to enjoy pain when it is inflicted on them. Go figure.

Re: THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH

Postby admin » Tue Oct 06, 2015 2:26 am

Illustrations, Part 12

122. Hare, Peru

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Fig. 122. Hare-Peru. The Aztecs like the Indians and Chinese, saw the Hare in the moon. According to the experts of the Museo National, Mexico City, this illustration has come from the Borgia Codex.

123. Hare on Sicilian coin

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Fig. 123. Sicilian coin. If the hare stands erect the dolphin appears "upside down", so that the hare (ego-principle) and the dolphin (principle of growth) alternately stand "erect".

124. Hare on a 10 drachma coin

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Fig. 124. 10 Drachma coin. Akragas. The soul as the picture of the eagle is shown, which can raise itself high into the air, but also raises its prey from the ground. It appears twice; the mood of soul which is directed downwards, shown in the eagle with downbent beak, has a destructive effect, like the locust. That soul which is turned upwards, shown in the picture of the other eagle, takes the hare-lepus-the Ars Chymia-upwards with itself. This hare is the symbol of the ego-strength of the spirit which can transmute all. In this hare we should not see prey that has been seized.

125. Hare, Asia

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Fig. 125. Hare [xi] Asia. In the far East too the hare represented the image of the ego of man who, in the spiritual world (shown through symbolic clouds) formed his own elixir of life from the general etheric world (the tree of life).

126. Hare (the ego) hidden in a treetrunk, A Chinese Netsuke

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Fig 126. Hare (the ego) hidden in a tree-trunk -- the picture for the living physical body. A Chinese netsuke owned by the author.

127. Chinese Netsuke, hare attacked by an eagle

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Fig. 127. Hare attacked by an eagle (Chinese netsuke). Here the eagle represents the lower soul-forces which darken the ego; in other words a darkening mood of soul overcomes the strength of the ego. Owned by the author.

128. Horn blower who is standing upon a hare

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Fig. 128. A horn blower who is standing upon a hare (reproduction Peter Heman, Basel). Basel Munster, outer wall.

129. Mountain of the Adepts

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Fig. 129. Mountain of the adepts. Alchemists' picture.

130. Mons Philosophorum

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Fig. 130. Mons Philosophourum from "Secret Symbols of the Rosicrucians from the 16th and 17th centuries", or "the innocent ABC for young students who practise daily in the School of the Holy Ghost in the light of nature and theology" [22]. (The book has been reprinted and is again obtainable.)

131. Tragedia with a white hare and the thyrsus rod, from F. CREUZER

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Fig. 131. Tragedia with a white hare and the Thyrsus rod on a Greek vase, from F. CREUZER [20].

132. Liber and Libera, from F. CREUZER

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Fig. 132. Liber and Libera from F. CREUZER [20] (Plate VM).
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Re: THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH

Postby admin » Tue Oct 06, 2015 2:30 am

Illustrations, Part 13

133. Probably the seal of a Hittite priest-king

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Fig. 133. Probably the seal of a Hittite priest-king.

134. The sea-hare

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Fig. 134. The sea-hare. Capital in the church of Dorlisheim (Alsace). I t is an imaginative picture of the ego which is still partially living in the soul world (the water) i.e. has not yet become terrestrial.

135. Hares

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Fig. 135. Hares. See ref. 4.

136. Madonna with the hare, Tungental

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Fig. 136. Madonna with the Hare. Tungental.

137. Hares, Paderborn

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Fig. 137. Hares. Symbolic language in the cathedral of Paderborn. The collaboration of three human individualities.

138. Mary and Jesus Child with a rabbit

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Fig. 138. White rabbit with Mary and the Jesus Child. The Munster Freiburg 1515, also a cross with roses and two goldfinches (see text).

139. TITIAN: Mary with the Jesus Child with a rabbit

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Fig. 139. TITIAN. Mary with the Jesus Child. Paris, Musee du Louvre.

140. The Initiation (Two Conjurers) from Moralia in Job (12th century)

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Fig. 140. The Initiation [xiii]. Quoted in "Apes and ape-lore". H. W. JANSON [33] Natural man, who still bears an ape-like creature on (in) his head, as a sign that the ape still dwells in his imaginative life, is initiated by a "great" initiate. The ape must vanish, the white hare is leaping towards him. By kind permission of the conservateur Bibliotheque Publique de Dijon.

141. MONTE DI GIOVANNI AND HIS STUDIO: Christ calling upon Simon Peter and Andrew to follow Him

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Fig. 141. Christ calling upon Simon Peter and Andrew to follow Him. MONTE DI GIOVANNI and his studio. From a psalter Fol. 2 verso. Cod. -- no number Florence. Library of the old convent S. Marco.

Plate M. MASTER OF THE CARNATION OF BADEN: The Visitation

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Plate M. MASTER OF THE CARNATION OF BADEN. The Visitation. Meeting of Mary (L) and Elizabeth (R) Dijon, Musee (Ancien Palais des Ducs de Bourgogne). See Note 14.

142. JAN STEEN: "In Welde Ziet Toe" (in the midst of plenty beware)

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Fig. 142. JAN STEEN: "In Weelde Ziet Toe" (in the midst of plenty beware!). Vienna. Kunsthistorisches Museum, Note duck on the shoulder of the schoolmaster.

143. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: The Temptations of St. Anthony, in private ownership

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Fig. 143. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: The Temptations of St. Anthony. The picture found in Zurich which consists only of the central panel.

144. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: x-ray of the signature in Fig. 143

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Fig. 144. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Signature. X-ray enlargement of the Zurich painting.

145. Detail of the signature area of Figure 143

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Fig. 145. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Signature. See Introduction and Note 19 on the discovery of the Zurich picture.

146. ERASMUS GRASSER: "Statuette"

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Fig. 146. Statuette by ERASMUS GRASSER. A Morija dancer with the bandage of dedication at his knee. Munich, Munchener Stadtmuseum.

147. Morija dancer

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Fig. 147. Statuette by ERASMUS GRASSER. Morija dancer with bandage of dedication over the hips. Munich, Munchener Stadtmuseum.
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Re: THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH

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Re: THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH

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Central Panel of Garden of Heavenly Delights

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Re: THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH

Postby admin » Tue Oct 06, 2015 2:43 am

THE GEOGRAPHY OF DOOM -- BOSCH'S PICTORIAL ESSAY ON THE DANGERS OF MUNDANE BELIEF
by Tara Carreon

Wertheim Ames observed that, in "The Temptation of St. Anthony," Bosch used The Golden Legend as a disguise to "show his own convictions and the situation in his own time." Again playing the religious commentator, in images from "The Garden of Earthly Delights" reproduced below, Bosch used the Catholic festival of Pre-Lent to display his savage contempt for mundane Christians untutored in Rosicrucian dogma by depicting them standing on their heads naked, displaying their hinder parts. While some interpreters suggest that acrobatic postures of several of the figures are meant to depict the light-hearted carnival of the Pre-Lenten revels, Ames argues that Bosch was criticizing them for having "the wrong attitude to their task." Nor is the prominent exposure of naked bodies a compliment to those so exposed; rather, since the Fall, going naked shows a lack of proper shame. The repeated juxtaposition of jackasses and human buttocks also attacks the impiety of permitting the ass-like nature of the body to dominate over the spirit. Naked bodies are also vulnerable to torment of the sort that is dealt out by the well-dressed tormentors in the hellish right frame of the triptych. Ames also draws a cautionary message from the red fruits that are everywhere in the Garden, saying that they represent the accumulation of "the abilities and strengths which have been brought out of one earthly life into cosmic existence and are then brought back as compressed activity," i.e., the Rosicrucian version of karma that can be wasted when "gifted people fall into a dead rut ... fail to develop ... further ... and so as artists, misuse their talents." Finally, the other type of food that appears in the Garden are fish, which both symbolize the Christian doctrine, and provided the proper Lenten meal for Catholics abstaining from meat. Fish are everywhere displayed out of their natural element, and are not receiving reverential treatment -- they are being carried off, injured, ridden on, and ominously, one fish borne along by three naked men on horseback is devouring another smaller fish. Perhaps indicating the preservation of the doctrine by "right-thinking" souls, a single winged figure, with a blue bird perched on his/her behind, flies away from the carnal melee, bearing a fish aloft."


"Whenever Bosch paints something upside down he means that something is going on that is the opposite of what is right; in this too he was consistent. Here it means that such representatives have the wrong attitude to their task."

-- THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH, by Clement A. Wertheim Aymes




"Since ancient times the donkey [ass] has been the symbol of the physical body as the bearer of the spirit, but the donkey represents the physical body as it became after the Fall, serving the spirit only reluctantly, both lazy and tough, difficult to guide, yet full of endurance when laden, clever and stubborn. In Isis and Osiris Plutarch tells that the god Osiris -- who corresponds to what is higher and divine in man -- was suffocated by Seth Typhon in a casket which had the form of a human body. This Seth Typhon is portrayed with a donkey's head. Here already the donkey appears as the symbol of the living physical body. When the human body became hardened, and grew to be the casket of the soul, man began to develop material understanding, but became cosmically dull. St. Francis of Assisi called the physical body brother donkey." -

- THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH, by Clement A. Wertheim Aymes.




"We have often found a red ball in Bosch's pictures. In The Garden of Heavenly Delights (middle panel) it is clearly representative of the "causal body". We must briefly describe its significance in connection with what is shown here: Individuals who are gifted have not gained their talents only through inheritance -- how frequently a genius stands at the beginning of a dynasty. Nor have they won their gifts out of nothing. The fruits of former earth-lives slumber within them as the potential of genius. They carry these fruits with them as their "causal body". These are the abilities and strengths which have been brought out of one earthly life into cosmic existence, and are then brought back as compressed activity -- hence the red "ball of causation". If such gifted people fall into a dead rut in life, they carry their abilities with them, but fail to develop them further. They become mere technicians in their art, and so, as artists, misuse their talents. They carry nothing forward into the future, but live on their past." -

-- THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH, by Clement A. Wertheim Aymes


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Re: THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH

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Re: THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH

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HERETICAL TORMENTERS AND VICTIMIZED FLESH
by Tara Carreon

Killers and Unaffected Observers are depicted, variously, wearing clothes and armor, as animals or machines, plants or eggs. In contrast, the Victims, being killed and tortured, are naked humans. Bosch's widespread use of prominent pagan symbols, like eggs, bandages of dedication, crescent moons and trumpets ("the trumpet sound of the Fama R. C.") to identify the oppressors suggests that his Garden of Heavenly Delights is a malediction being visited on all those who oppose his views, subjecting the viewer to a magic spell, a curse, an artistic torture.

Bosch's visual use of the "Judgment in a Garden" theme prefigures its literary appearance in The Chymical Wedding of Christian Rosenkreutz by Johann Valentin Andreae. Regarding the correspondence between Bosch's painting and Andreae's book, Wertheim Aymes notes that both painter and writer were working from a "typically Rosicrucian" theme: "Bosch must have been familiar with such a typically Rosicrucian imagination already in his time, a hundred years before Valentin Andreae wrote it down." Aymes observes that the chicken Bosch inserted in The Temptations of St. Anthony and The Hay Wain also appears in the Chymical Wedding. Similarly, the Garden of Heavenly Delights' images of judgment correspond closely to passages in the Chymical Wedding, as in the following:

His Royal Majesty had determined to punish all, albeit one more severely than another. For although what they had alledged was partly true, and therefore the Lords should not wholly be indulged, yet they had good reason to prepare themselves for death, who had so presumptuously obtruded themselves, and perhaps seduced the ignorant against their will. Thereupon many began most pitteously to lament and prostrate themselves, all which could avail them nothing, and I much marvelled how the Virgin could be so resolute, when their misery caused our eyes to run over. She presently dispatched her page, who brought with him all the cuirassiers which had been appointed at the scales, who were each commanded to take his own man, and, in an orderly procession, conduct him into her great garden. Leave was given to my yesterday companions to go out into the garden unbound, and be present at the execution of the sentence. When every man was come forth, the Virgin mounted up into her high throne, requesting us to sit down upon the steps, and appear at the judgment. The goblet was committed to the pages’ keeping, and we went forth in our robes upon the throne, which of itself moved so gently as if we had passed in the air, till we came into the garden, where we arose altogether. This garden was not extraordinarily curious, only it pleased me that the trees were planted in so good order. Besides there ran in it a most costly fountain, adorned with wonderful figures and inscriptions and strange characters (which, God willing, I shall mention in a future book). In this garden was raised a wooden scaffold, hung with curiously painted figured coverlets. There were four galleries made one over another; the first was more glorious than the rest and covered with a white Taffata curtain, so that we could not perceive who was behind it. The second was empty and uncovered, while the two last were draped with red and blew Taffata.... The virgin who first brought me the invitation, and whom I had hitherto never since seen, stepped in, and giving one blast upon her trumpet declared the sentence with a very loud voice: --

"The King's Majesty, my most gratious Lord, could from his heart wish that all here assembled had, upon his Majestie's invitation, presented themselves so qualified that they might have adorned his nuptial and joyous Feast. But since it hath otherwise pleased Almighty God, he hath not wherewith to murmur, but is forced, contrary to his inclination, to abide by the antient and laudable constitutions of this Kingdom, albeit, that his Majesty's clemency may be celebrated, the usual sentence shall be considerably lenified. He vouchsafes to the Lords and Potentates not only their lives intirely, but also freely dismisses them, courteously intreating your Lordships not to take it in evil part that you cannot be present at his Feast of Honour. Neither is your reputation hereby prejudiced, although you be rejected by this our Order, since we cannot at once do all things, and forasmuch as your Lordships have been seduced by base rascals, it shall not pass unrevenged....

"The others who stood not at the first, third, and fourth weight, his Majesty will not so lightly dismiss, but that they also may experience his gentleness, it is his command to strip them naked, and so send them forth. Those who in the second and fifth weight were found too light shall, besides stripping, be noted with one or more brands, according as each was lighter or heavier. They who were drawn up by the sixth or seventh shall be somewhat more gratiously dealt with, and so forward, for unto every combination there is a certain punishment ordained. They who yesterday separated themselves of their own accord shall go at liberty without blame. Finally, the convicted vagabond-cheats, who could move up none of the weights, shall be punished, in body and life, with sword, halter, water, and rods, and such execution of judgment shall be inviolably observed for an example unto others."

Herewith one virgin broke her wand; the other, who read the sentence, blew her trumpet, and stepped with profound reverence towards the curtain. Now this judgment being read over, the Lords were well satisfied, for which cause they gave more than they were desired, each one redeeming himself with chains, jewels, gold, monies, and other things, and with reverence they took leave....

Meanwhile, others were stripping, in which also an inequality, according to demerit, was observed. Some were sent away naked, without other hurt; others were driven out with small bells; some again were scourged forth. In brief, the punishments were so various, that I am not able to recount them all. With the last a somewhat longer time was spent, for whilst some were hanging, some beheading, some forced to leap into the water, much time was consumed. Verily, at this execution my eyes ran over, not indeed in regard of the punishment which impudency well deserved, but in contemplation of human blindness, in that we are continually busying ourselves over that which since the first fall hath been sealed to us. Thus the garden which lately was quite full was soon emptied.


The Sentence

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The Victims

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The Oppressors

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Re: THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH

Postby admin » Tue Oct 06, 2015 3:05 am

The Last Judgment

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Re: THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH

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Fragment of a Last Judgment

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Re: THE PICTORIAL LANGUAGE OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH

Postby admin » Tue Oct 06, 2015 3:12 am

St. Christopher
Oil on panel, 113 x 72 cm
Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam


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