Josef Dettlinger, Marienaltar: Detail, the Circumcision

Although done in an archaizing style, this sculpture group is more literal and historical than the medieval Circumcisions, which emphasized the relation of the ritual to the sacrifice of the Mass. Instead, this image imitates contemporary Jewish practice. Mary holds the baby for the mohel while sitting on a chair. The man standing at left with the prayer shawl apparently holds a cup of wine, also a feature of the Jewish Brit milah ritual. And there is no altar.

The one remnant of the old iconography is the candle held by one of the men in the back.

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More of the Circumcision

Photographed at the Pfarrkirche St. Blasius, Glottertal, Germany, by Richard Stracke, shared under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.