Cranach - The Agony in the Garden
The Agony in the Garden
Lucas Cranach the Elder
Grunewald hunting lodge
24.04.2019 - 18:21
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CDA ID / Inventory NumberDE_smbGG_580
Persistent Link
FR (1978) No.FR369
The Agony in the Garden[CDA 2012]
Lucas Cranach the Elder [Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 214-215, No. IV.15]
about 1537[Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 214-215, No. IV.15]
Owner / Repository / Location:
OwnerStaatliche Museen zu Berlin, Gemäldegalerie
RepositoryGrunewald hunting lodge
Dimensions of support: 150.2 x 113.4 cm [Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 214-215, No. IV.15]
Painting on lime wood (Tilia sp.) [Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 214-215, No. IV.15]
Signature / Date:
Artist's insignia on the stone underneath Christ: serpent (with dropped wings) and date '1537'
Inscriptions, Marks, Labels, Seals:
recto: bottom left: '624' (probably old Inventory) verso: top left, label: 'Staatliche Museen Berlin - Gemäldegalerie Inv.Nr. I. 642 Kat.Nr. 580 L. Cranach d. Ä.' Below, label: 'Verwaltung der Schlösser u. Gärten Berlin Kat.Nr. 11426 Lucas Cranach Christus am Ölberg' Right centre, seal: 'Koenigliche Museen Berlin' Below, black stamp: 'I.642' Bottom left and right, labels: 'Gen. Kat. No. 11425' Right below, label: 'KNr. 580 Inv. I/642' [Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, revised 2010]
The painting, which unifies elements from texts in the bible related to the scene of the agony in the garden, depicts Christ in the centre, kneeling in the garden of Gethsemane. A chalice accompanied by an angel appears to him while he prays filled with fear. Three apostles sleep in the foreground. Jacob - between Peter and John - folds his hands in prayer. [see Elke A. Werner, Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 214-215, No. IV.15]
- probably taken from the cathedral (Domkirche) in the 17th century and placed in the Erasmus chapel (Erasmuskapelle) of the Berlin palace; eight Passion paintings are listed in the Berlin palace inventory from 1700
[Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 213, Nos. IV.14-22]

- after its return from Wiesbaden (probably 1932) the painting was lent to the Stiftung Preußische Schlösser und Gärten (1960) in Charlottenburg palace (Schloss Charlottenburg), depot
- 1973 returned to Dahlem for an exhibition
- Since 5 June 1974 again on loan to Stiftung Preußische Schlösser und Gärten, Gunewald hunting lodge (Jagdschloss Grunewald)
(note in the file)
[Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, revised 2011]
Berlin 2009, No. IV.15
Berlin 1973, No. 6b
Sources / Publications:
Reference on PageCatalogue NumberFigure/Plate
Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009 A214-215No. IV.15Fig. IV.15
Tacke 2007 C81, 82, 84
Cat. Berlin 199635No. 80
Erichsen 1994 A157, 158
Friedländer, Rosenberg 1979144No. 369Fig. 369
Exhib. Cat. Berlin 1973No. 6b
Friedländer, Rosenberg 193284294
Friedländer 190564
Cat. Berlin 188398-99
Schuchardt 1851 C15-169
Cat. Berlin 1830143No. II.60
Interpretation / History / Discussion:
‚The painting is one of nine Passion panels, which were originally parts of an unknown number of winged altarpieces. Commissioned by Joachim II Lucas Cranach the Elder and his workshop created them for the collegial church in Berlin (Berliner Stiftskirche) between 1537 and 1538. This is one of the central panels, which was probably flanked by full-length depictions of saints on the wings and complemented by scenes from the old testament on the predella. […] The Berlin Passion cycle was based on the 16 Passion altarpieces, which were commissioned by Cardinal Albrecht from Lucas Cranach the Elder and his workshop for the collegial church in Halle (Hallenser Stiftskirche) (about 1520-1525) and it was the second large painted Passion series created in the Cranach workshop. Not only are numerous central panels now missing from the Berlin Passion altarpieces, like for example ‚The Arrest of Christ‘ or ‚The Crucifixion‘, but in addition the whereabouts of all the wing panels and a large number of the predella panels is unknown. They were probably lost in 1613 when Elector Johann Sigismund converted to Calvinism. […]‘
[Elke A. Werner, Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 213, No. IV.14-22]