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Studies of Caravaggio

 

"The Incredulity of Saint Thomas"

1601 - 1602

Sanssouci of Potsdame, Germany

Oil on canvas

 

According to St. John's Gospel, Thomas the Apostle missed one of Jesus' appearances to the Apostles after his resurrection and said "Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were and put my hand into his side, I will not believe it."  A week later Jesus appeared and told Thomas to touch Him and stop doubting.  then Jesus said, "Because you have seen me, you have believe; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed."

 

In the painting, Thomas' face shows surprise as Jesus holds his hand and guides it into the wound.  The absence of a halo emphasizes the corporeality of the risen Christ.  The work is in chiaroscuro, a magnificent theatrical lighting effect!

 

John 20:21 and 20:25 NIV


 

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