Historie – Otázky – Problémy

Grafický list s luteránským námětem Alegorie zákona a milosti ve vydáních Melantrichovy bible


Abstract: Even in the first edition of the Melantrich Bible in 1549 there is an engraving with the Lutheran motif of the Allegory of Law and Mercy in addition to a large number of other illustrations. We find it in editions from 1556, 1557, 1560, 1561 and finally 1570. A detailed comparison indicates that the closest iconographic and artistic analogies to it are plates with the Allegory of Law and Mercy of the Weimar type and engravings from the workshop of Lucas Cranach the Younger on the title pages of the Lutheran Bibles of 1541 and 1545. Similarities can be found in the selection of motifs and their setting within the overall composition, although the  artistic design of the woodcut in the Melantrich Bibles is different. Hence it is not impossible that by including the woodcut and the Allegory of Law and Mercy motif among his printed Bibles, the Utraquist Jiří Melantrich of Aventino wished to indicate their suitability not only for other Utraquists, but also for Lutherans. Informed readers must have been aware that this was a Lutheran motif with huge ideological potential, from having seen Lutherʼs Bibles dated 1541 and 1545, Cranachʼs “Prague variations” of the Allegory of Law and Mercy, Cranachʼs altar in Jáchymov and the wall painting in the cloister of the Dominican monastery in České Budějovice, which is similar to the one at Pardubice Castle.  

Keywords: Allegory of Law and Mercy; Bible of Jiří Melantrich of Aventino

Prof. PhDr. Ing. Jan Royt, Ph.D., ředitel Ústavu pro dějiny umění Filozofické fakulty Univerzity Karlovy v Praze, působí dále na Ústavu dějin křesťanského umění Katolické teologické fakulty UK v Praze, Filozofické fakultě Univerzity Jana Evangelisty Purkyně v Ústí nad Labem a na Akademii výtvarných umění. Zabývá se křesťanskou ikonografií a středověkým malířstvím (royt@volny.cz).