Hell is BADASS

Taking a quick look at some of the ghoulish and misshapen figures, you might think this is something by Hieronymus Bosch. It’s actually a commissioned religious piece by Master van Eyck. Take a moment to appreciate the horrors of the pits of Hell that this man painstakingly rendered in the smallest detail:

Β 
Death looms over the Abyss with bat-like wings. Note with delight the amount of clergymen you can spot by their headdresses or tonsured hair. Very gratifying.

Meanwhile, this motherfucker is wearing some sort of flesh-crown and smiling with painful glee, while his ghoulish, fanged belly devours the ass of some sinner, all the while triggering your deepest trypophobia.

Here a Lovecraftian child of Dagon is fighting with a bear monster over who is going to get wing or the thigh of the next sinner entree.

Yes, people of the ancient world had imaginations just as fucked up as we do today, as you can tell by these demonic creatures that would look right at home in a Hellraiser movie.

12th Century Medical & Herbal Collection

This beautifully appointed manuscript describes over 200 plants and animals with medicinal (and magical) properties, in multiple colors and gold and silver.

Included in the collection isΒ cannabis. Based on the style of the illumination (compared to its actual morphology), it’s likely the illustrator was basing their image off of a description alone, from hearsay or from another written source. Herodotus mentioned the use of hemp by the Scythians in 400BCE. Cannabis was just starting to become known to Europe in this century, by way of contact with Arab sources.

Translation mine:

Name of this herb: Cannabis. This herb grows in harsh places, and next to roads, and bound to fences. It’s main use is for consecration (fanandum)…

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