The Beauty of the Via Dolorosa
page As seen by the great artists
What is the Via Dolorosa? You've seen the Stations of the Cross in every Catholic Church you've ever visited. But what are they all about? Sometime around the 15th Century, a tradition developed in which believers - particularly on Good Friday - would retrace the steps that Christ took to Calvary.
If you visit Jerusalem today, 14 stations are marked along the "Via Dolorosa," Latin for "Way of Grief" or "Route of Suffering." Let's take a walk down the Via Dolorosa through the eyes of such great artists as Michaelangelo, Van Dyck, El Greco, Mantegna, Caravaggio and several whose names history has forgotten, but whose masterpieces still inspire us today.
The artwork above is Station 14: Lamentation Over the Dead Christ (1490) by Andrea Mantegna (1431-1506) on display today in Milan, Italy at the Panacoteca di Brera museum
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