Giotto di Bondone, The Arena Chapel Frescos: Detail, The Wedding at Cana

Circa 1305
Arena Chapel, Padua

This image combines several stages in the narrative in John 2:1-11. On the right Mary tells the servants to do what Jesus tells them. At his command, they pour water into jugs. On the left he raises his hand in blessing. (Note the configuration of the fingers.) Now back on the right, the steward in red tastes the wine that Jesus has changed from water.

The bridegroom sits in the center of the long table, with the bride at his right. For Schiller (164) this image depicts him "as the type of John the Apostle." This was a possibility in the 14th century, and the man does resemble images of John in other panels in the chapel. But in the chapel there are other figures of apostles that seem to resemble this one just as closely.

This panel is the third (reading from the left) in the middle register of the north wall. It is preceded by the Baptism of Jesus and followed by the Resurrection of Lazarus.

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Read more about images of the miracle at Cana.

Photographed at the chapel by Richard Stracke, shared under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.