St. Matthew and St. John; Left cover of The Washington Manuscript of the Gospels

Historical period(s)
Byzantine period, 7th century
Encaustic painting on wooden panel
H x W: 21.3 x 14.3 cm (8 3/8 x 5 5/8 in)
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view


Byzantine period (330 - 1453), Christianity, Egypt, Saint John, Saint Matthew

Monastery of the Vine-dresser, near Giza, Egypt [1]

To 1906
Ali Arabi, Giza, Egypt, to 1906 [2]

From 1906 to 1919
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919), purchased from Ali Arabi in Giza, Egypt, on December 19, 1906 [3]

From 1920
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Charles Lang Freer in 1920 [4]


[1] See object file for F1906.274, folder sheet note, Fr. Theodore Peterson, St. Paul's College, Catholic University, 1957.

[2] For purchase information, see object file for F1906.274. Also see Original Miscellaneous List, Biblical Mss. Section, S.I. 1467, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives.

[3] See note 2.

Previous Owner(s)

Ali Arabi (C.L. Freer source)
Charles Lang Freer 1854 - 1919

Published References
  • Henry A. Sanders. New Manuscripts of the Bible from Egypt. 2nd series, vol. 12, no. 1 Boston, January - March, 1908. pl. 3.
  • Jules Leroy. Les Manuscrits Coptes et Coptes-Arabes Illustrates. Bibliothèque archéologique et historique Paris. pl. 26.
  • Freer Gallery of Art. Gallery Book I: Exhibition of July 19, 1933. Washington, July 19, 1933. .
  • Caspar Rene Gregory. Das Freer Logion. Gregory, C.R. Versuche und entwurfe. 1 Leipzig. pl. 4.
  • Walter Dennison Charles Rufus Morey. Studies in East Christian and Roman Art. University of Michigan Humanistic Series, 12 New York. .
  • introduction by Henry A. Sanders. Facsimile of the Washington Manuscript of the Four Gospels in the Freer Collection. Ann Arbor, 1912. p. 1.
  • Ann C. Gunter. A Collector's Journey: Charles Lang Freer and Egypt. Washington and London, 2002. p. 16, fig. 1.2.
  • Thomas Lawton Linda Merrill. Freer: a legacy of art. Washington and New York, 1993. p. 67, fig. 46.
  • Kurt Weitzman. An early Coptic/Arabic miniature in Leningrad. vol. 10 Ann Arbor, Mich., 1943. pp. 119-134, fig. 7.
  • Dr. Michelle Brown. In The Beginning: Bibles Before the Year 1000. Exh. cat. Washington, 2006. cat. 28, p.145, 150-1,268.
  • Gary Vikan. Byzantine Art as a Mirror of its Public. vol. 118, no. 283 London, August 1983. pp. 164-167.
  • The Manuscripts of the Gospel in the Freer Collection. vol. 29 Ann Arbor, March 1913. pp. 257, 279.
  • Edwards Park. Treasures from the Smithsonian Institution., 1st ed. Washington and New York. p. 329.
  • Seymour de Ricci W. J. Wilson. Census of Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the United States and Canada. 3 vols., New York, 1935-1940. no. 3, p. 465.
Collection Area(s)
Biblical Manuscripts
Web Resources
The Story of the Beautiful
Google Cultural Institute
Rights Statement

Copyright with museum

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