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Presentation of Christ in the Temple

Master of the Lichtenstein Castle1445

Art Museum of Estonia

Art Museum of Estonia
Tallinn, Estonia

The Virgin Mary, with the Christ Child in her arms, is standing in a small church. Mary is handing the child to Simeon, a pious old man who was told by the Holy Spirit in a vision that he would not die before he had seen the Messiah. On the day of the presentation of Christ, Simeon is in the temple and gives his blessing to the Virgin Mary and her child. A young woman is standing on the right-hand side of Mary, bearing a basket with two doves as a purification offering. In accordance with the Law of Moses in the Old Testament, the parents of a newborn could, after 40 days of purification, present the child in the temple and sacrifice a pair of doves.
The painting was originally a part of an altarpiece consisting of sixteen panels located in the castle of Sebenstein near Wiener Neustadt. Fourteen of the panels from the altarpiece depicting the life of the Virgin Mary and Christ have survived and belong to different art collections all over the world. The Tallinn painting initially belonged to the collection of the Liphardts and was located in Tartu, in the Raadi Manor.

Details

  • Title: Presentation of Christ in the Temple
  • Creator: Master of the Lichtenstein Castle
  • Date Created: 1445

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