From the Publisher

Jan van Eyck’s Ghent Altarpiece is on any art historian’s list of the ten most important paintings ever made. Often referred to by the subject of its central panel, The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb, it represents the fulcrum between the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. It is also the most frequently stolen artwork of all time.

Since its completion in 1432, this twelve-panel oil painting has been looted in three different wars, burned, dismembered, forged, smuggled, illegally sold, censored, hidden, attacked by iconoclasts, hunted by the Nazis and Napoleon, used as a diplomatic tool, ransomed, rescued by Austrian double-agents, and stolen a total of thirteen times.

In this fast-paced, real-life thriller, art historian Noah Charney unravels the stories of each of these thefts. In the process, he illuminates the whole fascinating history of art crime, and the psychological, ideological, religious, political, and social motivations that have led many men to covet this one masterpiece above all others.

Published: PublicAffairs on
ISBN: 9781586489243
List price: $16.99
Read on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
Availability for Stealing the Mystic Lamb : The True Story of the World's ...
With a 30 day free trial you can read online for free
  1. This book can be read on up to 6 mobile devices.

Related Articles

Nautilus
7 min read
Pop Culture

Science Gets Down With Miles Davis and Bernini: Analyzing music and sculpture in the digital age.

This month, in our article, “Literature by the Numbers,” we introduced you to scholars using digital tools to uncover fresh historical and critical insights into fiction, poetry, and plays. To the chagrin of their old-school colleagues, the IBM Watson-era scholars are showing how computer analysis can uncover new meanings in the works of masters like Shakespeare. Digital research, though, doesn’t stop with literature. This week we reached out to scholars in music and sculpture for further insights into how digital tools illuminate art, music, and creativity. Anna Jordanous, research associate
Nautilus
4 min read

How to Make Art That Withstands the Test of Time

In the 1930s, Russian-born sculptor Naum Gabo started experimenting with a thin, plastic material called celluloid. Previously used as film for photography or to make cheap jewelry, celluloid in Gabo’s hands became translucent geometric structures that were often suspended in mid-air. Art critic Herbert Read wrote that Gabo was using “new materials…[for] a new generation to create with them the monuments of a new civilization.” His pieces made their way into the top art collections in the world. But by 1960, the plastic had begun to warp and crack. Gabo didn’t know it when he started using cel
New York Magazine
5 min read

The Art-History Straitjacket

JERRY SALTZ “THE KEEPER” NEW MUSEUM. CLOSES SEPTEMBER 25. THE ART WORLD ENJOYS asking big questions like “Can art change the world?” We usually answer “Yes.” I usually disagree. Art can’t stop famine in sub-Saharan Africa or eradicate Zika. Art, nevertheless, does change the world incrementally and by osmosis, typically by first changing how we see and thereby how we remember. Andy Warhol combined clashing colors that had never been together before, and that palette is now ubiquitous; God creating Adam looks the way Michelangelo painted it; Oscar Wilde said “the mysterious loveliness” of fo