The Theology of High Scholasticism and Gothic Art

Richard Viladesau

in The Beauty of the Cross

Published in print December 2005 | ISBN: 9780195188110
Published online February 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780199784738 | DOI:
 The Theology of High Scholasticism and Gothic Art

Show Summary Details


The crucifix, painted by Giunta Pisano for the basilica of St. Francis in Assisi, represents the triumph of Franciscan spirituality of devotion to Christ’s humanity, along with a new style of representation that would develop into the Gothic image of the suffering but beautiful Christ. The theological theories of atonement developed during the period of high Scholasticism by Bonaventure, Thomas Aquinas, and John Duns Scotus combined elements of Anselm’s “satisfaction theory” with a more theoretical emphasis on grace, developing a “sacramental” model of salvation. Medieval methods of exegesis and new “revelations” led to the introduction of further detail in the portrayal of the crucifixion. The humanism of the period also extended to an increasing emphasis on the suffering of Christ’s mother Mary, as seen in the famous hymn “Stabat Mater”.

Keywords: Aquinas; atonement; Bonaventure; Francis of Assisi; Gothic; Mary; sacrament; Scholasticism; Scotus; Stabat Mater

Chapter.  24072 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Christianity

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.