Curtain. Hermitage of San Baudelio. Casillas de Berlanga (Soria)Ca. 1125. Fresco painting on mural transferred to canvas, 156 x 112 cm.
This set of mural paintings that adorned the interior of the early eleventh-century Mozarabe church of San Baudelio de Berlanga was taken off the walls and exported to the United States in 1926, where it was divided among different institutions. Pieces from that set are now exhibited in museums in Boston and Indianapolis, and at the Cloisters Museum in New York. The six fragments were part of the decoration of the inner register of the nave of the Hermitage of San Baudelio, and the front of the choir stalls. All of the subjects were secular. The compositions are simple, using primary colors, and the figures are flat, with very summary profiles. The present piece was originally located on the left side of the wall running along the platform west of the body of the hermitage. As in oriental carpets, there are twelve large tangent circles over a greenish background with open-winged eagles inside. The large circles are linked by other smaller ones. The central one has a floral motif. If eagles have a symbolic content, it should be associated with Christ as, according to The Physiologist, their high flight takes them up to the sun of justice that is Him. Access to the six fragments: Elephant (P07264); Hare Hunting (P07265); Deer Hunting (P07268); Soldier or Beater (P07266); Curtain (P07267); Bear (P07263).