Monday, January 26, 2009

Shocking... but real: Madonna with a Flower

There's nothing less than a shitload of paintings created around the 1400s-1600s that depict Mary and Jesus hanging out when Jesus was a wee lad, and there's a lot of them that aren't particularly incredible. But there's a few that really are... quite amazing.

I saw the painting Madonna with a Flower and it was said that it was done by Leonardo. It didn't quite snap with me until a few seconds later that it was Da Vinci. But when I saw this, I thought... well damn. Mary is friggin young in this painting. Then I realized that women during the first century were usually married very young, and if Mary was a virgin anyway when she was impregnated with Jesus, then she would have been around fourteen tops.

More realistic than you'd think

So that being said I realized that this painting is actually more likely than the 20something or 30something year old Mary that we're used to seeing with Jesus as a baby. She's usually young but not quite this young.

This gave me a whole new perspective on the relationship between Mary and Jesus, especially if the Catholics have it right that Mary knew roughly what was going to happen to him. This is a girl rather than a woman really, and she's been entrusted with the Son of God, and she's only a little more than ten years older than him.

Intense, to say the least. I have this image of a 15-16 year old Mary trying to teach someone that she knew would be the messiah how to talk.


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