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Arrest of Christ

jesus soldiers judas apostles

The arrest of Jesus is described in all four Gospels. The episode follows the *Agony in the Garden and precedes the *Trials of Christ. A group of soldiers (temple guards, plus, according to *Luke, Jewish priests and elders) were led at night, by *Judas, to Jesus and the other *apostles in the garden of Gethsemane. Judas identified Jesus by kissing him (this not mentioned in *John), and the soldiers arrested Jesus. As an independent image, this important episode appears very early in Christian art (e.g., early sixth-century mosaics of Sant’ Apollinare Nuovo, Ravenna) and throughout the me- Page 24  dieval period, frequently following the kiss of Judas in sequential narratives. Soldiers (variable numbers, sometimes bearing lances and torches) approach, surround, or seize Jesus; Jesus may be shown standing calmly or being led away; his hands may be bound behind him. Landscape details of the outdoor setting may be indicated. Other episodes, which may be included within the scene, are *Peter cutting off the ear of Malchus (the high priest’s servant) with a sword, Jesus healing Malchus’s severed ear, and the apostles fleeing.

Arresti, Giulio Cesare [next] [back] Arrau, Claudio

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