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An embroidered orphrey panel

  • Country of Origin: Germany
  • Date: Circa 1450
  • Size: 45” (114cm) x 13” (33cm) including frame.
An embroidered orphrey panel


The Virgin is shown holding the Child and standing on an anthropomorphised crescent moon, an allusion to her chastity. The iconography has links with that of the ‘Woman of the Apocalypse’, a figure associated with the Virgin by Bonaventura in the 13th century and described in the Book of Revelation, 12:1- 17 as ‘a woman clothed with the Sunne, and the Moone under her feete..’. The saint below, holding a staff and aspergillum, is possibly Emmeram of Regensburg, purported to have been the Bishop of Poitiers and martyred circa 652AD, having been tortured and hacked to pieces while bound to a ladder. Another candidate, though less likely, is Benedict of Nursia, the ladder in this case an allusion to chapter 7 of his Rule, where reference is made to a ladder consisting of twelve steps of humility and reaching to heaven.

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