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15th Century Illustration of Burgundian Costume and Soldiers in the
Ghent Altarpiece by Jan van Eyck, Panel 9 - Knights of Christ
Southern Netherlands (Belgium), 1430-1432


A larger image of the Ghent Altarpiece by Jan van Eyck, Panel 9 - Knights of Christ, Southern Netherlands (Belgium), 1430-1432


The Ghent Altarpiece (also called the Adoration of the Mystic Lamb or The Lamb of God, Dutch: Het Lam Gods) is a very large and complex early 15th century Early Flemish polyptych panel painting. The altarpiece comprises 12 panels, eight of which are hinged shutters. Each wing is painted on either side, giving two distinct views depending on whether they are open or closed. Except for Sundays and festive holidays, the outer wings were closed and often covered with cloth. It was commissioned to Hubert van Eyck, about whom little is known. He was most likely responsible for the overall design, but died in 1426. It seems to have been principally executed and completed by his younger and better known brother Jan van Eyck between 1430 and 1432. Although there have been extensive attempts over the centuries to isolate the passages attributable to either brother, no separation has been convincingly established.
Today, most accept that the work was probably designed and constructed by Hubert and that the individual panels were painted by Jan after his return from diplomatic duties in Spain.
Source: Closer to van Eyck



Referenced on p43, French Armies of the Hundred Years War by David Nicolle
'The Knights of Christ' on a painted alterback by Jan van Eyck, c.1435. The detail of armour and horse harness in this magnificent example of Flemish early Renaissance art is remarkable, while the armour itself appears to be a mixture of German and French styles. (in situ Church of St Bavon, Gent)



See also Burgundian Soldiers in the 'Battle of Roncevaux', Tapestry, Tournai, Southern Netherlands (Belgium), 1475-1500
Other 15th Century Illustrations of Costume & Soldiers