South Side - S10V1CC10

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Adam and Eve

The east side is carved with the scene of the creation of Eve from Adam’s rib. Clad in a long garment, God stands to the left. Adam lies out- stretched before him as the figure of Eve is raised from his side. The capital’s heavily eroded condition makes its narrative sequence very difficult to interpret. However, at least this scene can be iconographically construed with some degree of confidence. It closely follows a medieval iconographic tradition, as exemplified by other versions of the same scene, such as that of the façade of Modena Cathedral or the mosaics in Monreale. On the right a naked figure with arms bent is turning towards a tree. Whether a further figure was originally present here to the far right cannot be recognized; smaller leaf canopies can be glimpsed here instead. Narrow relief strips, which might have represented the serpent, run between figure and tree; so it might be assumed that the Fall or the Temptation of Eve is represented here. On the other hand, the relief strips could also be interpreted as branches; in that case, the scene shown here might possibly be the entry into the Garden of Eden, especially since a clothed figure can be made out on the following north side. The west side of is completely destroyed. On the south side a naked female figure is shown standing next to a tree and is reaching out for something. If the relief strip rising next to the tree trunk be construed as the serpent, it would follow that the scene represented here is the Temptation of Eve or the Fall, the scene with which the narrative sequence ends. In most historiated capitals, the narrative sequence continues in a unilateral direction, either clockwise or anticlockwise. This poses the question whether the narrative in this capital was continuous and what scenes were originally represented on its west side.