Entry into Jerusalem
The north side of the capital shows Christ on an ass, his right hand raised in the gesture of blessing and his left hand holding a scroll, as he rides past a row of palms in the direction of the city of Jerusalem (Mt 21:1-11).
Five standing figures surround the sides of the capital, making different gestures and representing the crowds that hailed the Son of David, as described in the Gospel. They include two children, one of whom is taking off his tunic and pulling it over his head, while the other is spreading his garment on the ground before Christ. These gestures of respect and homage are vividly described. Two of the standing men have palm branches in their hands or are cutting them off a palm-tree. Three of the corners of the capital are also decorated with palms. Immediately behind this group, on the east side of the capital, the open city gate of Jerusalem is visible. The individual components of the composition are subtly layered, one behind the other, on different levels.
Seven figures follow Christ. Directly behind him are the apostles with haloes, who according to Matthew’s Gospel accompanied Christ from Bethany, and further figures, who represent the crowds who hailed him along the road, as described in the Gospel: “And the crowds that went before him and that followed him shouted...” (Mt 21:9).
It is a scene of the exaltation and triumph of Jesus in his earthly life.