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Creation of Eve, Temptation, and Expulsion,

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Creation of Eve, Temptation, and Expulsion

“The Creation of Eve, Temptation, and the Expulsion” (after Raphael) from the Vatican Loggia of Leo X, engraving, Francesco Villamena, Rome, c. 1600.

The visual source for these engravings is the “Raphael Bible,” fifty-two frescoes painted by Raphael and his workshop in the Vatican Loggia. The Temptation reveals influence from two other famous Renaissance masters, Masaccio and Michelangelo. Raphael represents the snake’s body with a female face, common in earlier imagery. While Michelangelo’s and Masaccio’s scenes take place on a barren background, Raphael adds more natural greenery, suggesting the Garden of Eden. His figures are more graceful and tranquil. Most importantly, in Raphael’s Temptation, it is Eve not Adam who takes a more active role: in Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel Adam seizes the fruit himself, while in Raphael’s fresco Eve takes the fruit and gives it to Adam. This action seems to imply that she is guiltier of sin than Adam, which was a subject of great debate among Renaissance scholars! These engravings were mass-produced for a poorly educated audience who could not read the Bible in Latin. They were hungry for visual images of this central Christian story.

Question: How did other artists represent the Temptation of Adam & Eve?

Answer: See other paintings at http://jewishchristianlit.com/Topics/AdamNeve/