The Coronation of the Virgin

Paolo and Giovanni Veneziano

The Frick Collection

The Frick Collection
New York City, United States

The Coronation of the Virgin is recounted not in the New Testament but in the apocryphal story of the Virgin’s death. In many Coronation scenes painted by Paolo and other Venetian artists a sun and a moon accompany the principal figures, the sun from early times being associated with Christ and the moon with the Virgin. The angels singing and playing musical instruments in the Frick panel symbolize the harmony of the universe; their instruments are the authentic components of a medieval orchestra, accurately depicted and correctly held and played. The inscription along the base of the throne is drawn from the Eastertide antiphon Regina coeli. The decorative sparkle of the surface — with its brilliant, expensive colors, patterned textiles, and lavish gold leaf — reflects the Venetians’ love of luxury, a taste that enriches as well much of fourteenth- and fifteenth-century architecture in Venice.

Source: Art in The Frick Collection: Paintings, Sculpture, Decorative Arts, New York: Harry N. Abrams, 1996.


  • Title: The Coronation of the Virgin
  • Creator: Paolo and Giovanni Veneziano
  • Date Created: 1358
  • Physical Dimensions: 43 1/4 x 27 in. (109.9 x 68.6 cm)
  • External Link: See more on The Frick Collection website
  • Medium: Tempera on panel
  • Credit Line: Purchased by The Frick Collection, 1930

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