The Wallace Collection

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The Annunciation
  • Bartolomé-Esteban Murillo (1617 - 1682)
  • The Annunciation
  • Spain
  • c. 1665 - c. 1670
  • Painting
  • Oil on canvas
  • Image size: 187 x 134 cm, edges uneven
    Object size: 228 x 171 x 15.5 cm
  • P68
  • Great Gallery
Commentary
History
Further Reading
  • The painting depicts the moment described in Saint Luke's Gospel (I, 26-38) when the Angel Gabriel tells Mary she is to bear Jesus, the Son of God. Murillo typically transforms the domestic scene into one of celestial glory by means of his translucent colour and vaporous painterly effects. A column of divine golden light illuminates the kneeling Mary. Cloud-borne angels swirl above her and Gabriel, hovering to one side, gestures to the descending dove of the Holy Spirit. Mary’s earthly preoccupations, symbolised by the sewing basket in the foreground, are forgotten in this moment of divine revelation. Painted c.1665-70, the picture closely resembles another Annunciation painted c.1688 for the Capuchin church in Seville.