The Temptation of St. Anthony by Hieronymous Bosch (c. 1505)

Flemish religious nutcase/fucking genius Hieronymous Bosh depicts St. Anthony facing off with Old Scratch in the desert in Egypt. Lucifer’s torments of Tony took on the form of the a half-fish-half-gondola demon, tree-headed dudes mounted upon mouse demons, and a dude with a thistle for a head. Spear wielding skeletons astride flying fish, pig-faced rogues, and malicious Pekinese dogs look on mockingly as a demon queen torments the Egyptian monastic.
“The devil fought him there by afflicting him with boredom, laziness, and the phantoms of women. He overcame the devil’s snares by the power of the Lord Christ. After that, he went to one of the tombs, and he resided therein and closed the door on himself. Some of his friends used to bring him food. When the devil perceived his ascetic life and his intense worship, he was envious of him, and he beat him mercilessly, then left him unconscious. When his friends came to visit him and found him in this condition, they carried him to the church. After he somewhat recovered, he went back to the same place. The devil again resumed his war against St. Antonius, only this time the phantoms were in the form of wild beasts, wolves, lions, snakes and scorpions. They appeared as if they were about to attack him or cut him into pieces. But the saint would laugh at them scornfully and say, “If any of you have any authority over me, only one would have been sufficient to fight me.” At his saying this, they disappeared as though in smoke, for God gave him the victory over the devils. He was always singing this psalm, “Let God arise, let His enemies be scattered; let those also who hate Him flee before Him.” (Psalm 68:1)
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One Response to “The Temptation of St. Anthony by Hieronymous Bosch (c. 1505)”

  1. Gray Moon Gallery Says:

    Flemish/Belgian painter Jan Theuninck made his Temptation of Anthony in 1999, more shocking than Dali's one :http://www.flickr.com/photos/26915283@N07/3877985781

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