Jun 1, 2006

The Virgin with a Starry Crown

The Virgin with a Starry Crown


Albrecht Dürer

(German, 1471–1528)


Gift of Leonard C. Hanna, Jr. 1934.334

Catalogue raisonné: Meder 32

State: II/II



Dürer made four engravings of the Virgin and Child standing on a crescent moon. These devotional images link the Madonna with the pregnant woman of the apocalypse from chapter 12 of the Book of Revelation. The verse says that "a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars . . . " appeared in heaven, delivering a son to conquer Satan—a prefiguration of Christ. In direct contrast with the crowned Virgin here, whose double aureole shines extravagantly around her figure, Dürer conceived the Madonna (1958.116) with simplicity and humility. In each he presents the dual roles of the Virgin as the Queen of Heaven and as the humble mother of Jesus.

See also
PR - Engraving
Type of artwork: 

Contact us

The information about this object, including provenance, may not be currently accurate. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email [email protected].

To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.

All images and data available through Open Access can be downloaded for free. For images not available through Open Access, a detail image, or any image with a color bar, request a digital file from Image Services.