Title of Work
West Facade, Capital Frieze, Ministry and Passion of Christ
Title of Image
22: Presentation in the Temple
c. 1145
West Façade, Right Frieze, Life of Christ, Right Side of Central Portal
22: Presentation in the Temple
(Luke 2:21-23)
This scene takes up two capital faces. On the first, Mary and the priest Simeon face each other across a cloth-covered altar. Both are headless and do not seem to have halos. Their hands are also missing. Heimann suggests that the figure of the Christ Child was once suspended over the altar, though it is now missing as well. At right is another headless figure (perhaps the prophetess Anna or a woman holding an offering). Houvet believes this scene is the Circumcision (Houvet, p. 29). Nolan also identifies this first part of Heimann’s scene as the Circumcision, with the remainder constituting the Presentation in the Temple (p. 57, p. 68 n. 27).
On the next capital face stand two bearded men, one of whom holds a child; the other holds up an object (a dove?) in his cloth-covered hands. Compare his cap with those worn by several of the jamb figures and some of the figures on the right tympanum. At the far right are two smaller figures of women. Heimann suggests this continuation of the scene is "Joseph, carrying the Child and accompanied by four worshipers, arrives in a procession" (Heimann, p. 82-83). Heimann also suggests that the placement of the Presentation after the Massacre of the Innocents and the Hiding of Elizabeth and John is due to its order in Byzantine cycles (Heimann, p. 82); however, Nolan proposes that the principal reason for its location is to provide a typological relationship to the rejection in the temple of Joachim and Anne (pp. 60-61).
Compare with the whole scene on the Upper Lintel of the Right Portal and In Panels 11-2 of the Infancy window above the Royal Portal (Delaporte no. 2, Deremble-Mahnes no. 50.) All three representations date from before the fire of 1194.
At right are figures from:
23: Christ among the Doctors.
24: Unidentified Scene (Mary and Joseph Taking Jesus Home?).
Type of Work
Subtype of Work
Capital Frieze
Cathédrale de Chartres--Pictorial works.;Church decoration and ornament--France--Chartres--Pictorial works.;Church architecture--France--Chartres--Pictorial works.;Christian art and symbolism--France--Chartres--Medieval, 500-1500--Pictorial works.
Philip Maye
MEDART Website

Chartres: Cathedral of Notre-Dame

22: Presentation in the Temple