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The Crucifixion
Master of the Aachen Altarpiece

This is the centre panel of a triptych painted for the church of St Columba, Cologne.

The Virgin and three holy women mourn the crucified Christ. Saint John the Evangelist stands on the right. The busy background includes other episodes in the story: on the left, Christ carries the Cross, falling under its weight; on the right his body is taken down from the Cross.

Similarly, the scenes on the shutters show events before and just after his Crucifixion .

Key facts
Artist Master of the Aachen Altarpiece
Artist dates active late 15th to early 16th century
Full title The Crucifixion
Group The Crucifixion Altarpiece
Date made about 1490-5
Medium and support Oil on oak
Dimensions 107.3 x 120.3 cm
Acquisition credit Presented by Edward Shipperdson, 1847
Inventory number NG1049
Location in Gallery Not on display
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The Crucifixion Altarpiece

This triptych was formerly in the church of St Columba, Cologne.

The centre panel shows The Crucifixion while the left wing shows 'Christ before Pilate' and the right wing shows the story of the Lamentation of Christ.

The front panels also show nine episodes from the Passion of Christ centred around the Crucifixion.

Both wings have reverses. When closed the triptych shows two donors kneeling, on the right, observing the Mass of Saint Gregory, which is taking place on the left panel.

Coats of arms identify the donors as Hermann Rinck (Mayor of Cologne in 1480 and 1488, died 1496) and his wife Gertrud von Dallem.

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