We visited the Aachener Dom, the Aachen Cathedral, built by Charlemagne and his final resting place. We also went to the Schatzkammer, the treasure house. It held many beautiful and a few weird things. Below are three images from a large altar piece card out of wood. The proportions are odd, Jesus looks quite small relative to the others, presumably because it was to be mounted high above the worshipper, so once in proper perspective it would all be…well, in perspective. Still, I cannot figure out why Jesus is in a box. On the one hand the tableau is reminiscent of the last supper, but Jesus is in a box. On the other hand all the men around the table are in vestments and gowns, priests and (presumably) royalty, but Jesus is in a box.1
My assumption is that this must represent the risen Jesus. Here he is being worshipped during Eucharist as the sacrificed savior while also evoking his status as the risen Christ.
But I am open to other suggestions.
- It was common, and they had several examples, to have the benefactor in the iconography. So one painting was of the crucifixion with all the usual suspects plus two men in contemporary garb and their family crests as well. [↩]