Leaf from a Gospel Lectionary


This leaf once formed part of a Gospel lectionary from Constantinople, written and illuminated around the same time the “St. Peter’s Gospels” was being produced at Salzburg. Pausing after writing the first line of his text, the evangelist Mark is deep in thought. The artist avoids any hint of an architectural setting, allowing viewers to focus instead on the dramatic intensity of the evangelist’s facial expression. The noticeable shift in style at Salzburg may perhaps be attributed to increased trade connections with Venice and northern Italy in the eleventh century, which provided an important link to Byzantium.

Leaf from a Gospel Lectionary, in Greek
Constantinople, early eleventh century
Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, MS W.530a
Purchased by Henry Walters, before 1931