The trial of Jesus (Christ before Caiphas)
Scrovegni Chapel, Padua, Italy, painted 1304-1313 by Giotto
"Again the high priest asked him, and said unto him, Art thou the Christ, the Son of the Blessed? And Jesus said, I am: and ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven. Then the high priest rent his clothes, and saith, What need we any further witnesses? Ye have heard the blasphemy: what think ye? And they all condemned him to be guilty of death."
- The Holy Gospel according to Mark, Chapter 14, 61-64
See also this story according to Matthew, Chapter 26, line 63-66. The essential difference between both texts is that Marc says the high priest tore his shirt (in biblical Greek: tous chitônas), while Matthew identifies him expressingly as Caiphas and says he tore his cloak (tà imátia). Luke and John do not report this gesture. The rending or tearing of one’s clothes (as a sign of intense grief and anger) is a common mourning practice in historical Mediterranean & Near Eastern cultures and other parts of the world. In Jewish tradition it is known as Kriah.