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Who's Who in Michelangelo's Creation of Adam: A Chronology of the Picture's Reluctant Self-Revelation

Leo Steinberg
The Art Bulletin
Vol. 74, No. 4 (Dec., 1992), pp. 552-566
Published by: College Art Association
DOI: 10.2307/3045910
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3045910
Page Count: 17
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Who's Who in Michelangelo's Creation of Adam: A Chronology of the Picture's Reluctant Self-Revelation
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Abstract

Not until the 1870s, following the first publication of photographs of the Sistine Ceiling, did anyone notice significant presences under God's backward arm in the Creation of Adam. Since then, the identity of the two embraced figures-Eve and the Christ Child-has been either ignored or contested. Also ignored, under God's outstretched arm, was the presence of the rebel angels, the origin of sin in Satanic envy, and Lucifer's imminent confrontation with Michelangelo's name saint, the Archangel Michael. There is apparently more between the median and the right edge of the fresco than was dreamt of in our historiography.

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