LOMBARDIA - Milano
SCHEDA : Milano Duomo 3
TITOLO : Saint John the Evangelist window

LOCATION: Milano, Cathedral, window sXX

DIMENSIONS: window composed by 3 lancets. The tracery is composed of trilobes and a rose. h. 1570 cms. x w. 280 cms.; each rectangular panel measures 115 x 61 cms.; each trilobe measures 55 x 35.5 cms.

PROVENANCE: Milano Cathedral; it was painted for one of the south transept window situated "versus Curiam archiepiscopalem" (toward the Archibishop's residence). This stained glass window which was divided between windows sXIII and sXIV for a long time, was reassembled in window sXX during the last restoration.

CHRONOLOGY: 1473-1478 (documented)

AUTHOR: the Gesuati Monk Order - Cristoforo de' Mottis (documented)

PATRONAGE: The Notaries College

SUBJECT(S): 1a) St John's Torture; 1b) St.John on the Isle of Pathmos; 1c) The Funeral of Drusiana; 2a) St. John meets Cratone; 2b) The Debate between St. John and Cratone; 2c) Two youths divide their wealth among the poor; 3a) The converted youths complain about poverty; 3b) St. John takes the youths to the beach; 4a) St. John resurrects the dead; 4b) The Dead Report; 4c) St. John obliges the youths to work; 5a) St. John heals the sick ; 5b) St. John liberates the possessed; 5c) St. John drives out the Devils; 6b) The Destruction of the Ephesus Temple; 7a) The Rebellion of the People; 7c) The Trial by Poison; 8a) St. John resurrects poisoned people; 8b) The Baptism of Aristodemo (P. Bertini, copy); 8c) Aristodemo destroys the Idols and builds a Church; 9a) Aristodemo distributes a sum among the poor; 9b) The young Man's Conversion; 9c ) St. John delivers one of the Youths to the Bishop; 10a) St. John riding on horseback pursues the Youths; 10b) St. John heals the sick ; 10c) Jesus appears to St. John; 11a) St. John orders to dig a hole; 11b) St. John's Death; 11c) The Rapture of St. John; 6a) and 6c) trilobes and traceries patchwork; 12a) and 12c) Doctors disputing (trilobes); 12b) trilobe with coat-of- arms (P. Bertini).

CRITICAL NOTES : Initially, the Gesuati master glaziers were commisioned to execute this window on 16 november 1473), (the panels of late Gothic inspiration can be attributed to them). Left unfinished, this work was then assigned to C. de' Mottis in september 1475, and completed in february 1478. In the glazier's style many influences are recognizable: the motifs of Filarete's sculpture (2b-4c-6b); the elements of Lombard artists such as Foppa, the Mantegazza brothers, and Amadeo; and the art, influenced by Cossa and Tura, of Bologna glaziers.

The iconography of this stained glass comes from the Life of St.John the Evangelist in the Legenda Aurea of Jacopo da Varagine according to translations of Vincenzo di Beauvais, Monbrizio,and Pietro de Natalibus which were well known in XV cent. Lombardy. It is to be noted that three miracles do not belong to the Legenda Aurea (5a, 5b, 5c).

CONDITION: The grisaille of some panels is lost; several XVII-XVIII century restorations .Some panels are heavily overpainted. P. Bertini (1868) substituted many broken or lost panels; or painted new panels in place of old ones that were too damaged or lost.

Restoration and Conservation: 1967 Ven. Fabbrica del Duomo: Curator: E.Brivio-Cleaning system: on the external face clear water thickened by cellulose; on the internal face a brush dusting. Almost all the leads have been changed.Two panels (1b,3c) have been substituted with copies. In the panel 4b the lost grisaille on the body of the revived dead man has been overpainted with accuracy. New frames in " bronzo marina" (a particular type of bronze alloy) and new copper protective nets: No protective glazing.

BIBLIOGRAPHY : See Bibl.Duomo 3

PHOTOGRAPHIC CREDITS: Fototeca Ven. Fabbrica del Duomo

TRANSLATION: Suzanne Miele