Description This grouping of the Virgin and Child with saints (Mary Magdalen, Jerome, an unidentified male saint, and Sebastian) is known as a "sacra conversazione" (sacred conversation), since the figures appear in a unified space that would allow them to speak to each other. This format is usually associated with altarpieces though in northern Italy it often appeared as here, with the figures at half-length and close to the viewer. A brocade drapery hangs behind Mary and Jesus to mark their status as King and Queen of Heaven. The lamb held by the Christ Child is a reference to his nickname, the "Lamb of God," and is a symbol of his future sacrifice. The painting is associated with the joint workshop of the brothers Francesco and Bernardino Zaganelli, which was the most prolific in late 15th and early 16th century Ravenna. The brothers’ individual hands are often difficult to distinguish and this panel has been attributed to both of them as well as to the early period of their pupil, Girolamo Marchesi (see 37.423). For othe paintings at the Walters by the Zaganelli and their workshop, see 37.739 and 37.1071.
|12/31/1969||Examination||examined for condition|
|1/17/1984||Treatment||cradle removed; examined for condition; inpainted; other; varnish removed or reduced|
Provenance Don Marcello Massarenti Collection, Rome [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1902, by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters with the Massarenti Collection, 1902
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