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A page from a religous book, possibly the "Missal."  The scene is painted into the shape of an "e", which stands for Epiphany (Epiphania in the original Latin).  The Epiphany is a Christian holiday celebrating the revelation that Jesus Christ was the human manifestation of God on Earth.  The appearance of the three Maji, or wise men, in Bethlehem is often celebrated as this revelation, and is traditionally celebrated on January 6th.  This scene is depicted in this artwork.  Mary, with a halo made of gold lead surrounding her head, is holding the baby Jesus, who also has a halo, while the Maji, also with halos, offer Jesus their gifts.  Sheet music, possibly a Gregorian chant, appears on the lower part of the page.

Title: E

Medium: Gouache and gold leaf on vellum

Dates: c. 15th Century

Dimensions: 8" H x 5.5" W

Culture: European

Accession Number: A1972.3.268

Credit: Gift of the Estate of Julian Clarence Levi

Tags: 15th century, christianity, ephiphany, gold leaf, gouache, gregorian, jesus christ, madonna, mary, missal, painting, religious, wise men, works on paper