This is one panel on
the left side of an altarpiece. St. Giles, the figure in the brown
habit, can be identified by reference to a tall panel immediately to the right of it,
which portrays him with the same face and habit and several of his
Christ is shown directly above Giles, with red squares marking off the ends of the cross in his halo. The scroll in the angel's hand reads, "[ISTE?] EST DOMINUS REX GLORIE" ("[This?] is the Lord, the King of Glory"). The scroll in the saint's hand reads "ET DOMINUS FORTIS IN PROELIO" ("and the Lord strong in battle"). These phrases are from the Vulgate of what is now called Psalm 24, verse 3: "Who is this king of glory? The Lord, strong and powerful, the Lord, strong in battle."
The relevance of the
psalm is that the phrases on the scrolls were understood to refer to
the Ascension of Christ, the
subject of the central panel of the altarpiece. The phrase "strong in
battle" is here attested by a victory over Satan's minions.
Furthermore, the phrases are preceded by a section that asks who may "ascend into the mountain of the Lord" and answers "the innocent in hands, and clean of heart . . . . This is the generation of them that seek him." Apparently the artist and his patrons took Giles to be such a person and therefore a sharer in Christ's victory.More of St. Giles