Portrait of Mark in a Gospel According to the Four Evangelists

Maker(s)
Artist: Yohanes
Historical period(s)
1253
Medium
Opaque watercolor, ink and gold on parchment
Dimensions
H x W (overall): 24.4 x 17.9 cm (9 5/8 x 7 1/16 in)
Geography
Armenia
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Collection
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
F1944.17
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Manuscript
Type

Manuscript

Keywords
Armenia, Christianity, Gospels, Saint Mark, The Apostles, WWII-era provenance
Provenance
Provenance information is currently unavailable
Label

This eighteenth-century Armenian leather binding that encloses a mid-thirteenth-century Gospel is decorated with silver studs, now tarnished, in the form of a cross in the upper center.  A pair of small silver plaques in the shape of the "evil eye" are set on either side.  The crystal, with its cruciform grooves in the center, is particularly notable;  it may have held a relic at one time, underscoring the power and importance attached to Gospel books in Armenian culture.

Published References
  • Eva Baer. Sphinxes and Harpies in Medieval Islamic Art: An Iconographical Study. Oriental Notes and Studies, no. 9 Jerusalem. pl.34, fig. 6.
  • Souvenir Program Booklet: 45th Annual Convention, Washington, D.C. Washington. pp. 9, 28-9,31-2.
  • Sirarpie Der Nersessian. Armenian Manuscripts in the Freer Gallery of Art. Oriental Studies Series, no. 6 Washington, 1963. pp. 18-25, pls. 17-27.
  • Diane Cabelli, Thomas F. Mathews. The Palette of Chatchatur of Khizan. no. 40. pp. 37-40.
  • Helen Carney Evans. Manuscript Illumination at the Armenian Patriarchate in Hromka and the West. Ann Arbor. pp. 52-3,78-88.
  • Laura Schnieder. Freer Canteen. vol. 9 Washington and Ann Arbor. pp. 137-156, pl. 5, fig. 14.
  • Archaeological Chemistry III. Advances in Chemistry Series, no. 205 Washington, 1984. pp. 243-254.
  • Medieval Armenian Culture. University of Pennsylvania Armenian Texts and Studies, no. 6 Chico, CA. pp. 284, 273, fig. 6.
  • Avedis Krikor Sajian. Catalogue of Medieval Armenian Manuscripts in the United States. University of California Publications, Near Eastern Studies; vol. 16 Berkeley. pp. 717-728.
Collection Area(s)
Biblical Manuscripts
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
SI Usage Statement

Usage Conditions Apply

There are restrictions for re-using this image. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

The information presented on this website may be revised and updated at any time as ongoing research progresses or as otherwise warranted. Pending any such revisions and updates, information on this site may be incomplete or inaccurate or may contain typographical errors. Neither the Smithsonian nor its regents, officers, employees, or agents make any representations about the accuracy, reliability, completeness, or timeliness of the information on the site. Use this site and the information provided on it subject to your own judgment. The Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery welcome information that would augment or clarify the ownership history of objects in their collections.