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image SG2

St. Anne teaching the Virgin to read, stained glass panel, Netherlandish or early German?, 16th century

Clear glass and brown paint, yellow stain

Height: 150mm, approximate
Width: 80mm, approximate

Museum number: SG2

Curatorial note

St Anne, wearing a long hood or cloak, stands holding an open book. The young Mary, shown with long flowing locks, stands in front to one side and together they point to a word on the open page. Simple architectural detail surrounds the scene at the top and right. With its identical border, this is possibly one of a pair with CAT. 4, Saint Cecilia, and both are treated as such in their symmetrical placement in the fanlight. The plump facial features and the head-dress of St Anne may indicate a German origin. Shading has been achieved by lines lightly scratched through a thin matt of brown paint.

The education of the Virgin derives from The Golden Legend, drawing on the apocryphal Gospels, and was a favourite theme in Counter-Reformation art.

Literature

Catalogue of the Stained Glass in Sir John Soane's Museum, Special Issue of the Journal of Stained Glass 2004, p. 134


If you have any further information about this object, please contact us: worksofart@soane.org.uk