Identification and the Purple Pages of the Vienna Genesis

by Sister Hilda Kleiman, OSB

In our class session on Early Christian and Byzantine art in History of Art at Mount Angel Seminary, the Vienna Genesis is one of our objects of study.  The Vienna Genesis is one of the earliest codexes illustrating the Bible.  The top half of the pages usually contain the script, with scenes and images on the lower half of the page.

Our discussion includes identifying the scenes and figures by just looking at the images without any additional information, an exercises that tests our knowledge of the book of Genesis as well.

The Deluge

Rebbecca at the Well

Departure of Joseph

Joseph and the Wife of Potiphar
Joseph in Prison

Blessing Benjamin and Manasseh

Information for this post has been drawn from the fourth edition of Art Across Time (public library) by Laurie Schneider Adams.