Walk as often as you may with Jesus, in your thoughts contemplating the bitter steps, go my soul, make haste […] O! If we just could properly, vividly and realistically evoke this spectacle before our eyes, watch Jesus walk through the streets […]
It would seem the greatest mercilessness, ingratitude, impropriety, and hard-heartedness, yes, indeed, proof of a callous and unfeeling mind, if we could imagine in our thoughts His body on the cross without pity and tears, His pale cheeks and blue lips, His inanimate corpse drained of all its blood, without everything in us being moved and every drop of our blood running cold.
Bishop Peder Hersleb, 1741
In the new Langestrand church, finished in 1699, in the town of Larvik on the western side of the Oslo fjord, there were two special paintings. The first one, probably donated in 1709, depicted a royal vision that had taken place in 1625. According to a painted inscription, the second painting, donated in 1752 by one Knud Mørch, rendered a representation of a so-called ‘Passions-Wisere’, which means ‘Passion Clock’. Both paintings are hanging on the wall in the nave of the most recent church at Langestrand, built in 1811. Thus, in the eighteenth century, this church received paintings representing what is perhaps the only two fairly widespread exclusively Scandinavian Christian motives: ‘The Vision of King Christian IV’ and ‘The Passion Clock’. As a rather sketchy report from a major work in progress, this paper presents this second motif, the ‘Passion Clock’ in more detail.