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THE DESCENT

"El Descendimiento (The Descent)" (see details A | B | C) (see related A), 1435 Roger van der Weyden (1399 - 1464) El Prado Museum, Madrid, Spain

A composition called "Compasio Mariae" by the great master of Tournai. The body of Jesus is held by Jose de Arimatea, Nicodmo and a man - Mary has fainted into the arms of San Juan (John). In this rendition is exceptional. Weyden applied one of the purest lapislazulis blues for those times.

The work was commissioned for the chapel of the "Cofradia" of the "Ballesteros de Lovaine" (presumably fraternity of a "crossbow" company in Louvain - note sp for ballesta pointing to ballistic which in those days was delivered by "crossbow" machines). The work "passed" (most likely as loot or "booty" of war) to Maria de Humgria (not an earlier true Queen of Hungary but another who was a Habsburg Queen of Austria and Hungary who was the daughter of Juana la Loca and Felipe el Hermoso) - her cousin became King Phillip II of Spain and who conveyed the work to be held at the El Escorial (1574) until from where in 1939 it passed to the Museo del Prado (information from a partial extract from the label offered by the staff of the Museum).

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