The Last Judgment (Toma din Suceava)

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Part of a fresco at Moldovita Monastery in Romania
Fresco of the Last Judgment at Voroneț Monastery, Romania
Detail from the Last Judgment (Judecatii de Apoi) above the door of Moldovita Monastery

The Last Judgment is a fresco by Toma din Suceava at the Moldovita Monastery in Romania. The name of the work in Romanian is "Judecata de Apoi".[1]

The Last Judgment covers the west wall of the monastery. It shows the day of judgment with a river of fire and the dead coming out of the sea. Prince Mohammed is one of the heretics. There are 105 paintings of angels near the roof.[1]

The Moldovita Monastery also has famous frescos of the Siege of Constantinople and the Tree of Jesse, showing Christ's genealogy.[2]

Prince Rares and the artists[change | change source]

The Moldovita Monastery is a UNESCO site. It was started in 1532 by Prince Petru Rares, the illegitimate son of Stephen the Great. It was built on the location of an old stone church built by Alexandru cel Bun (1400-1432). The old church fell in the early 16th century because of rain and landslides.[1]

Petru Rares ruled Moldavia between 1527-1538 and 1541-1546. He had new ideas for the churches in Bukovina. Rares hired artists to cover the walls of the churches with complicated designs of saints, prophets, and scenes from the life of Jesus.[1]

The best preserved monasteries are in Sucevita, Moldovita, Voronet, Humor, Suceava, Pătrăuţi, and Probota. Seven monasteries were put on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1993. The Moldovita Monastery was consecrated to the Annunciation (Romanian: "Bunei Vestiri") on March 25. It is one of five monasteries in northern Moldavia with frescoes painted on the outside walls.

The monastery is in the style of Moldavian Gothic architecture. It combines Gothic and Byzantine elements.[3] It is a Romanian Orthodox monastery.[4]

The Moldoviţa frescoes were completed by Toma of Suceava in 1537.[1] Toma of Suceava's painting is in the Italian Renaissance style, with humanized characters.[5]

The Last Judgment in art[change | change source]

The theme of death is a common subject for religious art, but the frescos in the monasteries in northern Moldavia are special. These frescos are more complex than art in other areas of the former Byzantine Empire. The Moldovan work was a model for Mount Athos.[6]

The oldest image of the Last Judgment is from the seventh century CE. It is in the Christian Topography of Cosmas Indicopleustes. The manuscript is in the Vatican library. The first known frightening picture of the Judgment in fresco are from 1075. They are in the church "San Angelo in Formis" near Naples. The oldest mosaic with this theme is in Venice, in the church of Torcello. It is probably from the twelfth century.[6]

Gallery[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 "UNESCO: Moldovita Monastery (Manastirea Moldovita) | Best of Romania". Bestofromania.eu. Retrieved 2016-05-24.
  2. "ROMANIA's Painted Monastries and Churches in Bucovina, UNESCO World Heritage Sites: Voronet, Sucevita, Moldovita, Humor". Romaniatourism.com. Retrieved 2016-05-24.
  3. "Moldoviţa, the Most Beautiful Monastery Founded by Petru Rareș » Unesco in Romania - History & Legacy". Unescoinromania.ro. 2015-02-27. Retrieved 2016-05-24.
  4. ... "Moldovita Monastery, One Of The Famous Painted Monasteries In Romania, Unesco Heritage Stock Photo 61349094". Megapixl. Retrieved 2016-05-24.
  5. Toma of Suceava's painting departs from the canons of Byzantine art, instead the influence of the Italian Renaissance are brought to the surface through his rendition of humanized characters.
  6. 6.0 6.1 "Frescele Înfricoşătoarei Judecăţi din nordul Moldovei: Cele mai detaliate icoane despre sfârşitul lumii". Ziarullumina.ro. 2016-05-20. Retrieved 2016-05-24.

Other websites[change | change source]