Sacred Art in 100 words
The Madonna of the Book –Sandro Botticelli, 1480-83, Poldi Pezzoli Museum
In this painting, the artist provides a meaningful meditation on the Incarnation. Here we see Christ Child sitting on Mary’s lap in a domestic space. Notice the following details: The Book of the Hours – Mother Mary is seen praying from the Book of Hours, a common thirteenth-century prayer book. Through this she contemplates on the Word Made Flesh, seated on her lap. The Passion – Notice the nails and the Crown of Thorns wrapped around the newborn’s hand. This reminds the viewer that Jesus was born to die for our sins and redeem us. Remember, the sword that pierced the Son’s side also pierced the Mother’s heart.