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Mary and Joseph walk to Egypt with the infant Jesus. Engraving by N. Pitau, 1666, after S. François.

François, Simon, 1606-1671.
Date
1666
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view Mary and Joseph walk to Egypt with the infant Jesus. Engraving by N. Pitau, 1666, after S. François.

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Credit: Mary and Joseph walk to Egypt with the infant Jesus. Engraving by N. Pitau, 1666, after S. François. Wellcome Collection. Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

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About this work

Description

The holy family travel on foot as opposed to with the help of an ass; this illustrates the quotation from St. Bernard's sermons in which Mary's carrying of Christ in the womb is balanced with Joseph's supposed bearing of him on his back on the voyage to Egypt. Behind them, a statue has fallen from its shelf in a tree trunk: this is an allusion to the Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew (chapter 23) in which the infant Jesus causes the idols in an Egyptian temple to tumble and break

Bible. N.T. Matthew 2.12-15. Joseph is warned in a dream to take Mary and Jesus to Egypt; thus they avoid Herod's massacre of the holy innocents (Matthew 2.16)

Publication/Creation

Paris (rue St. Jacques proche les Mathurins) : N. Pitau cum privilegiis regum Franciæ et Hispaniæ, 1666.

Physical description

1 print : line engraving

Lettering

Quid est quod Maria portat Jesum in utero, Joseph in humero, in Ægyptum iens et inde rediens. S. Bernardus in parvis sermonibus, serm. 41 ...

Reference

Wellcome Library no. 24062i

Lettering note

Lettering continues: "Gradus scalæ Jacob supremus cui dominus innixus erat non alius accipiendus est quam beatus Joseph, Nonne huic scalæ innixus fuit dominus cum eius paternà ope et piâ vectatione indigens uteretur deus homo factus de loco in locum fugiens Herode persequente. Rupertus de trinitate in Genesi. libro. 7. c. 22.0. Clarissimo abbati D.D. Matthæo de Morgues de St. Germain hanc sancti Josephi puerum Jesum in Ægyptum deferentis effigiem, quam in sacello ecclesiæ nosocomii infanabilium præter cœteros quos adiecit ornatius magnificè depingi fecit, et e' suggestu coram serenissima Galliæ et Navarræ Reginâ Mariâ Theresiâ octogenario maior explicavit dicat, offert, consecrat humillimus et obsequentissimus cliens et seruus, Nicolaus Pitau chalcographus. S. Francoys Turonensis inv. et pinx."

Type/Technique

Languages

  • Latin



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