Art History Reveals The Nativity of Mary

The most important fact of her life, that Jesus was born of her, is enough to tell her whole story. What more do you want to know? What further inquire would you make concerning the Virgin? It is enough for you that she is the Mother of God. What beauty, I as you, what virtue, what perfection, what grace, what glory does not befit the Mother of God?   (St Thomas of Villanova OSA)

Italy from 1350, Fresco Rinuccini Chapel, Santa Croce, Florence birth-of-the-virgin-mary-by-giovanni-da-milano

«La Nativité de la Vierge» de Philippe de Champaigne (1602-1674),


“Your birth, O Blessed Virgin Mary, fills the whole world with a sweet consolation and a holy joy, because of you was born our Jesus, our God, who has taken away from us the curse in which we were plunged by the sin of our first parents, and filled us with all kinds of blessings.” ~ St. John Vianney

Birth of the Virgin, 1434 by Paolo Uccello

GHIRLANDAIO, Domenico- Birth of Mary, 1486-90, Fresco, width 450 cm, Cappella Tornabuoni, Santa Maria Novella, Florence



Her birth is a cause for great joy as it is considered the “dawn of our salvation” Pope Paul VI, Marialis Cultus, 1972.

Nativity of Mary; first seven steps mosaic, from Chora Church, c. 12th century; her parents Saint Anne & Saint Joachim.


Benozzo Gozzoli  The Birth of Mary 1491 Castelfiorentino


 Birth of the Virgin, Orsola Maddalena Caccia, c.1635- Pinacoteca Malaspina, Pavia
ENTRANCE ANTIPHON From the Mass of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary
With joy and gladness
let us celebrate the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
from whom has risen the Sun of Justice, Christ our God.

Russian orthodox icon


a7938c48c341d968c44a293c9024a5b2“When it came to human nature the time to meet with the divine nature and become attached to it so closely that the two did not form but one person, each of which was necessarily to have already shown in their entirety. In comes to God, he had proved in the way that befitted God, the Virgin is the one that gives birth to human nature … it seems that if God mixed with human nature not in its origin but in the end times (4.4 Ga), it was because, before that moment, this nature had not yet fully born, whereas now, in Mary, she appears for the first time in its integrity … ”
St. Nicholas Cabasilas (c. 1320-1363)







The Birth of the Virgin Mary Esteban Murillo Louvre Paris …. The Nativity of Our Lady Maria Andrea di Bartolo 1400. National Gallery of Art .



Ἡ γέννηση τῆς Θεοτόκου- Greek Icon by Schmemann Alexander (Protopresbyter (1921-1983)


“The Orthodox Church has always emphasized the connection of the Virgin with humans and welcomes this and sees it as the best, cleanest and most wonderful fruits of human history and recovery of God from man, the recovery of ultimate meaning, of later content of human life.”

The Birth of the Virgin  Maria Juan Pantoja de la Cruz  16093 Prado




That the Church in East and West
may rejoice together today
in the Nativity of the Holy Mother of God:
the gate that opens to the Rising Sun,
the Scroll of the Living Word,
the Door made ready for the entrance of the High Priest,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.
That, through the intercession of the Mother of God,
those caught up in hatred may be converted to mercy,
those who plot evil become instruments of peace,
and those who seek revenge find the path to reconciliation,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary Filippo Lippi XV


Nikolaos Doxaras (Greek: Νικόλαος Δοξαράς; 1706/10 in Kalamata – 2 March 1775



Albrecht Altdorfer The Birth of the Virgin


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