The Gates of Paradise- Adam and Eve

Lorenzo Ghiberti, Adam and Eve panel, 1452. Gates of Paradise, Florence Baptistery, Italy.

This bronze casting is part of the Gates of Paradise doors made by the workshop of Lorenzo Ghiberti in the early fifteenth century for the Florence Baptistery of San Giovanni- an octagonal building that faces the cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore.

Before getting this commission, Ghiberti cast the northern doors of the baptistery that depict stories taken from the New Testament. These eastern doors depict scenes from the Old Testament and are most commonly known as the “Gates of Paradise” after Michelangelo exclaimed that they were so beautiful would be perfect for the gates of paradise. 
In each panel, Ghiberti described more than one scene. In this panel Ghiberti combined scenes in the story of Adam and Eve. The scenes flow from left to right, starting with God creating Adam from clay on the bottom left to Eve’s creation in the center rising from the rib of sleeping Adam, to the expulsion on the right . The apple and serpent part are shown in lower relief at the back left. Variations in the relief and scale of the figures keep the stories discrete.


A collection of first-century Jewish and early Christian writings that, along with the Old Testament, makes up the Christian Bible.

Also called the Hebrew Bible, those parts of the canon that are common to both Jews and Christians. The designation "Old Testament" places this part of the canon in relation to the New Testament, the part of the Bible canonical only to Christians. Because the term "Old Testament" assumes a distinctly Christian perspective, many scholars prefer to use the more neutral "Hebrew Bible," which derives from the fact that the texts of this part of the canon are written almost entirely in Hebrew.

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