THE LADDER TO PARADISE

MS 1753
MS Short Title JOHANNES CLIMACUS: THE LADDER TO PARADISE
Text JOHANNES CLIMACUS: THE LADDER TO PARADISE
Description MS in Russian Church Slavonic on paper, Russia, ca. 1560, 167 ff. (-ca. 33), 22x14 cm, single column, (15x9 cm), 23 lines in Cyrillic half-uncial, headings and initials in red, a miniature of St. John and the ladder drawn around the final lines of the text.
Binding Russia, ca. 1560, calf over wooden boards, sewn on 6 cords, lower board the original.
Provenance 1. Owner in Uglich, Russia (18th c.); 2. The Paul M. Fekula Collection, New York, MS 741 and F-X (until 1990); 3. Sotheby's 29.11.1990:65; 4. Sam Fogg cat. 14(1991):43.
Commentary The remarkable miniature shows St. Johannes Climacus (ca. 570-649), reading his text from a scroll to his disciples. The 30 steps of the ladder represent the years of Christ's life before his Baptisism. Opposite is his vision, two monks climbing up the ladder to be welcomed by Christ, while two others are thrown by a devil to the pit below, where a great orange-vermilion monster waits to devour them. This subject originated in Byzantine painting. The present miniature is extremely close in composition and style to MS 62 in the Monastery of the Trinity, which is also of the 16th c.
Place of origin Russia
Dates ca 1560 AD

Location