This alabaster relief by an unknown English artist depicts the Virgin Mary as a child, being taught to read by her parents. Mary, crowned, reads from a book on a lectern while her parents stand to either side. Saint Anne, her mother, is to her left, gesturing toward the page; her father, Joachim, stands to her right, holding a rosary in his left hand. Stylistically, the work is typical of late fourteenth-century English carving, but its subject matter is unusual. Depictions of the Virgin being instructed by her mother are common, but it is extremely rare to find both parents represented; only one other example, in the Museo Arqueologico Nacional, Madrid, has been recorded.
Ulrich Middeldork, 'Sculptures from the Samuel H. Kress Collection: European Schools XIV-XIX Centuries'
A box of Xrays of the Kress Collection is on Shelf G in the Vault (6/5/2018).
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