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Descent into Limbo

A work made of engraving in black ink on cream laid paper.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of engraving in black ink on cream laid paper.

Date:

1475/80

Artist:

School of Andrea Mantegna
Italian, 1431-1506

About this artwork

In this deeply engraved, drawinglike print, Christ strides over the demolished gates of hell, carrying a victory standard. On the right, Adam and Eve are seen with their righteous son Abel, while Cain has been left in hell for murdering his brother. The demons that represent the torments of hell herald Christ’s arrival. These devils, with their scales and reptilian tails, resemble dragons, and have elflike ears. They seem to be flying, one of them distractedly doing acrobatic tricks instead of blowing his horn.

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Prints and Drawings

Artist

School of Andrea Mantegna

Title

Descent into Limbo

Origin

Italy

Date

1475–1480

Medium

Engraving in black ink on cream laid paper

Dimensions

422 × 334 mm

Credit Line

Bequest of Mrs. Potter Palmer, Jr.

Reference Number

1956.1022

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.

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