Pontius Pilate granted Joseph of Arimathea permission to bury Jesus. He supports Christ's body while Nicodemus takes pliers to prize off his left arm nailed to the cross. The Virgin Mary (left, very damaged) holds her son's right arm, tenderly raising it to her face. To the right, depicted alone on one side of the capital, John brings his hand to his face in a gesture of mourning. The Entombment immediately follows The Descent from the Cross. Joseph of Arimathea, at Christ's head, and Nicodemus, at his feet, lay Jesus wrapped in a shroud in a sarcophagus. The Virgin mary and Saint John stand behind, weeping.
The Musée des Augustins' collection of Romanesque sculpture is composed mainly of remnants from the three most significant religious buildings in Toulouse: the Monastery of La Daurade, the Collegiate Church of Saint Sernin and Saint Etienne Cathedral.
It was the choice the clerics (monks or canons) responsible for the upkeep of these religious buildings made to live as a community, that led to the construction of functional convent buildings, organised around large cloisters decorated with simple or elaborate sculpture.
As the capital of a powerful county and a fast growing economic, political and religious centre, in the 11th and 12th centuries, Toulouse enjoyed a context highly favourable to the birth of an original art movement. The quality, diversity and exceptional longevity of the movement place Toulouse firmly among the major centres of Romanesque art. Thus, the works in the Musée des Augustins constitute fundamental milestones for the history of sculpture.