The Virgin and Child with Writing Case

Austria, beginning of the 15th century
The Louvre

This is a characteristically 15th century interpretation of the more formal Throne of Wisdom type from earlier centuries. We still have the throne, mother, child, and book; but the work emphasizes the child's twofold identity as divine and human – a human boy in a child's clothing who has fallen asleep at his writing lesson – yet also, as the pen and padlock remind one, the divine author of all and the Lamb worthy to open the "seals" of Revelation 5. As McDevitt (243) puts it, "In the motif of the writing Christ Child, Jesus is both the Word made flesh and a young boy who must be held on his mother's lap."

Read more about the portraits of the Virgin Mary.

Photographed at the Louvre by Richard Stracke, shared under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.