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Title / Description: Turkish and Papal AtrocitiesCommentary: This is a depiction of Turkish atrocities, an expression of the fear that gripped central Europe as the Ottoman Turkish empire advanced north and west from the Balkans, up to the very gates of Vienna. Turks were depicted as cruel and barbarous. What makes this image different, however, is the fact that it links the pope with the turks. In the foreground we see Turks slaughtering Christians; directly behind we see the pope and his armies persecuting Christians (notice the cloud of demons that trails behind the pope's camp). The association the pope with the Turks is a much more immediate linking of Catholicism with danger than the association of the pope with the Antichrist, since the Turks were around the corner, so to speak, while the Apocalypse--though near--was some unknown distance away.
Object Type: image - woodcut
Author of Commentary: Carlos Eire
Source: Eire, Carlos M. N. Private slide collection