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Belles Heures of Jean de France, duc de Berry, 1405–1408/9. Herman, Paul, and Jean de Limbourg (Franco-Netherlandish, active in France by 1399–1416). French; Made in Paris. Ink, tempera, and gold leaf on vellum; 9 3/8 x 6 5/8 in. (23.8 x 16.8 cm). The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, The Cloisters Collection, 1954 (54.1.1).
The Procession of Flagellants, Folio 74v
This unusual, dramatic, chilling yet beautifully rendered scene shows a litany procession as practiced in Europe in the days of the Limbourgs, with penitents whipping themselves and each other. The dragon pennant flying after the cross follows a custom in France. The garb of the flagellants includes both the hoods common in Italy and the wide-brimmed hats with bare torsos more typical in the North. This is one of the scenes that demonstrates the artists’ skill, daring, and innovation in representing the nude human body.