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Reconstruction of Golgotha and the Holy Sepulchre, Seen from the Walls of Herod's Palace (Reconstitution du Golgotha et du Saint-Sépulcre. Vu des murs du palais d'Hérode.)

James Tissot

European Art

Calvary, the site of the Crucifixion, was located just outside the walls of Jerusalem. The artist notes that in the enclosure visible in the middle distance—flat ground in an otherwise rocky terrain— three post holes held the crosses for Jesus and the thieves who were condemned to die alongside him.

Invoking the writings of Saint Ambrose, Tissot says that Christ was crucified at the spot called Golgotha, or the place of the skull. According to tradition, Adam, the first man, was buried on this very site: an appropriate connection, for Jesus, as the “Second Adam,” undoes the Fall of Man recounted in the book of Genesis and redeems humanity from its sins.
MEDIUM Opaque watercolor over graphite on gray wove paper
  • Place Made: France
  • DATES 1886-1894
    DIMENSIONS Image: 6 1/4 x 12 7/16 in. (15.9 x 31.6 cm) Sheet: 6 1/4 x 12 7/16 in. (15.9 x 31.6 cm) Frame: 15 x 20 x 1 1/2 in. (38.1 x 50.8 x 3.8 cm)  (show scale)
    SIGNATURE Signed bottom right: "J.J. Tissot"
    COLLECTIONS European Art
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CREDIT LINE Purchased by public subscription
    RIGHTS STATEMENT No known copyright restrictions
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    CAPTION James Tissot (French, 1836-1902). Reconstruction of Golgotha and the Holy Sepulchre, Seen from the Walls of Herod's Palace (Reconstitution du Golgotha et du Saint-Sépulcre. Vu des murs du palais d'Hérode.), 1886-1894. Opaque watercolor over graphite on gray wove paper, Image: 6 1/4 x 12 7/16 in. (15.9 x 31.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Purchased by public subscription, 00.159.9 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 00.159.9_PS2.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 00.159.9_PS2.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2008
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