The Virgin Mary is wearing a bellshaped cloak with a hood, net-like frills, and a star at the shoulder. This is a paenula, the garment in which the Madonna is usually seen in Byzantine art. The figure, which is designed to be viewed from any side, is seized with vigorous movement. This gives the impression that the Madonna, like some celestial vision, is about to rise up from the drum-shaped socle. A rosary is draped over the Christ Child, who is almost naked and is reaching his little arms up to his mother’s face. The use of a cloak modelled on the paenula is a recollection of time-honoured icons that were traditionally held to offer an authentic image of the Madonna. Serious technical errors are in evidence on the figure, suggesting that Leinberger was experimenting with bronze casting. His interest in the process is easily explained: Emperor Maximilian had commissioned from him a largerthan- life bronze figure for his tomb.

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