The Crucifixion

1210-15
Stained Glass
Cathedral of St. Steven, Bourges

Ecclesia on the left wears a crown and collects Jesus' blood in a chalice. The chalice is a visual metaphor for the theology expressed in the Glossa Ordinaria on John 19:34 ("one of the soldiers with a spear opened his side, and immediately there came out blood and water"): "It does not say he pierced or he wounded but he opened, for in this way he threw open the gates of life, from which flow out the sacraments of the church, without which there is no entering into life" (V, 1316, my translation). On the right, blindfolded Synagoga's scepter breaks as she loses her crown and turns aside. Émile Mâle (188-89) discusses the medieval theology by which "by his death Jesus not only founded the Chruch, but abolished the authority of the Synagogue."

As common in Crucifixion images of this era, Jesus wears a short skirt. Above his head we see the sun and moon that signify the eclipse that occurred at the time of his death.

More of the Crucifixion
More of Ecclesia

Source: The Medieval Stained Glass Photographic Archive