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Exegetical Duality As A Meditative Crux In Maarten Van Heemskerck's Balaam And The Angel In A Panoramic Landscape Of 1554

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Chapter Summary

This chapter argues that Maarten van Heemskerck and Dirck Volckertszoon Coornhert depart crucially from earlier printed images of Balaam and the Angel, such as the woodcuts in various editions of the Speculumb humanae salvationis and Dat spieghel onser behoudenisse, in order to compel the viewer to reflect upon and ultimately to experience what it means spiritually to discern the mystery of the Incarnation. Although Balaam and the Angel shares the panoramic format of the prints about prophecy, it differs in complexity, for the bipartite print juxtaposes two accounts of the prophet the one based on Numbers 2224, as it is read in 2 Peter 2, Jude 1, and Revelation 2, the other on the passages describing what Balaam was inspired to see from the heights of Moab. Together these two halves constitute a meditative crux upon which we are invited to reflect.

Keywords: Angel; Balaam; Dirck Volckertszoon Coornhert; Maarten van Heemskerck; meditative crux



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