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About motives

The homepage provides access to art- and cultural information about a particular wall paintings style, mural workshop and date. Also included are the paintings pictorial content, biblical and historical characters and ornamental details. 

Style includes the style periods 1080-1175 Romanesque, 1175-1275 Late Romanesque, 1275-1375 Early Gothic, 1375-1475 Gothic, 1475-1550 Late Gothic, 1550-1630 Renaissance, 1620-1750 Baroque and 1740-1775 Rococo. If it is not possible to determine a wall paintings specific style period it is classified as Cannot be specifically dated.

Mural workshop includes all presently known painters and workshops as well as new workshops identified in the process of making the homepage “Wall paintings in Danish churches”, If the painter or the workshop is not identified, the mural workshop is defined as unknown.

 Date defines when the wall painting was painted, often defined as an interval. If the year of origin is known, both Date From and Date To are the same.

Motif defines the wall paintings pictorial content. In the process of making the homepage “Wall paintings in Danish churches” a classification for pictorial content was also made. The classification covers five overall topics Narratives, Persons and creatures, Allegories, Ornamentation and Signs and marks.

Narratives includes scenes, which depicts an event, a situation or a story regardless whether the scene originates from The Bible, The Apocrypha, a hagiography or scenes from everyday life.   

Persons and creatures include illustrations of “living” beings, including biblical characters, saints, historical characters, animals and imaginary beings.

Allegories include scenes with allegorical or symbolic meaning.

Ornamentation is defined as ornaments, continuous pattern decorations and other decorations, which traditionally are defined as ornamentation.  Ornaments are solitary standing ornamental decorations. Ongoing pattern decorations consist of lines, shapes, colors, motives etc. which forms regular structures. Continuous pattern decorations are termed borders if they run as bands. If the continuous pattern decoration covers a surface, they are defined either as stray ornaments or scrolling vine ornaments. Other decorations, which traditionally are termed ornamental wall paintings, are depictions of architecture, draperies or imitations.

Sign and mark include consecrations crosses, inscriptions, hallmarks, coats of arms and labyrinths.

It must be noted, that a motif can be classified in numerous categories. For example the depiction of The Lamb of God is classified as both Person and creature: Animal and Person and creature: Christ. A depiction of The Nativity of Christ can be classified as both Narrative: Childhood of Jesus and Narrative: Everyday life if the depicted domestic utensils or clothing are characteristic for the time, the painting was painted.

The homepage also gives access to information about characters depicted in every single wall painting, whether they are from The Bible or The Apocrypha, from hagiographies or are historical characters. Name refers to depicted persons and creatures. Persons and creatures defined only by an inscription are not included.

Last but not least, all ornamental details in the ornamentation are identified for all wall paintings. For information about the classification of ornamental details go to Ornamental details.