Iconographic Analysis of Scenes of the Miracle of Healing Patients with Epilepsy in Manuscripts of Florence Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana Plut. 6.23 and Paris Bibliotheque National de France Grec 74


ART-SANAT, pp.735-761, 2023 (ESCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.26650/artsanat.2023.20.1288365
  • Journal Name: ART-SANAT
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.735-761
  • Keywords: Byzantine Art, Byzantine Manuscripts, Iconography, Miracles, New Testament
  • Anadolu University Affiliated: Yes


The subject of this article is to provide an iconographic analysis of patients with epilepsy healing scenes. It is illustrated in the inventory numbers of manuscripts Plut 6.23 and Grec 74. These manuscripts date to the last quarter of the 11th century and are samples of illustrated Tetraevangelion. Miraculous healings are recurring themes in the New Testament. Indeed, the healing of patients with epilepsy is mentioned in the New Testament such as in Matthew 17: 14-21, Mark 11: 14-29, and Luke 9: 37-43. Laur. Plut 6.23 and BnF Grec 74 are the illustrated Tetraevangelion. In manuscript Plut 6.23, the chapters of Matthew, Mark, and Luke depict the healing of epileptic patients and illustrate the relevant scenes. Besides, in inventory number Grec 74, the healing of patients with epilepsy is illustrated only in chapters of Matthew and Mark. Luke does not describe the miracle of healing patients with epilepsy. Plut 6.23 displays three scenes while Grec 74 presents two scenes. As a result, a total of five illustrations on healing of epileptic patients can be found in these two manuscripts. Illustrations of the healing of patients in the Plut 6.23 have a narrative style. Besides, these illustrated scenes include four or five consecutive moments. In other words, all the scenes in Plut 6.23 are closely related to New Testament chapters. However, in the scenes of Grec 74, the depiction is less detailed and is centered on the healing scene. Nevertheless, the iconographic details of Grec 74 display proficient artistic skill.