In Milan: The Last Supper
As we approach the EASTER Weekend, I thought I’d share one of my absolute favorite experiences in Milan — a 15-minute viewing of LEONARDO DA VINCI’S historic mural, The Last Supper. The carefully preserved artwork is on display at the Santa Maria delle Grazie church and it’s a stunning depiction of the final days of JESUS before his crucifixion. JESUS tells his disciples that he knows one of them will betray him and The Last Supper depicts their reaction to his pronouncement.
In The Last Supper, the number three is a symbol that many believe represents the holy trinity. First, Da Vinci grouped the disciples in threes along one side of a long banquet table and the disciples present were Peter, John, Bartholomew, James of Alphaeus, James the Greater, Thomas, Philip, Matthew, Jude, Simon, Andrew and of course Judas. Then Da Vinci continued the trinity theme with three windows behind Jesus and with a triangle between Jesus and John, or who some believe is actually Mary Magdalene.
The best thing about viewing The Last Supper in person is that you get to decide what you see. You’re there, standing before the original, as it was meant to be seen, not some layman’s interpretation of what you should see. You decide. To the right of Jesus, is that Mary Magdalene or is it John? Is Judas clutching a small bag of silver, payment for his betrayal? And was Judas so shocked by Jesus’ pronouncement that he spills the salt shaker in front of him? (And is that why Southern cooks throw salt over their shoulder if they spill salt to ward off bad luck?)
The Last Supper is now more popular than Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa at the Louvre in Paris, so book in advance. People were visibly moved viewing The Last Supper, but you could hear a pin drop it was just that quiet. People just sat or stood in deep thought and reflection. So, if you’re visiting Milan, don’t miss Leonardo Da Vinci’s The Last Supper.
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