Landscape Design in the Middle Ages » The Annunciation (detail)

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The Annunciation (detail)

Workshop of Rogier van der Weyden (possibly Hans Memling, active by 1465, died 1494) (Netherlandish, 1399/1400–1464)
The Annunciation (detail), 1465–75
Oil on wood; 73 1/4 x 45 1/4 in. (186.1 x 114.9 cm)
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917 (17.190.7)

The view through the window of the Virgin’s household exhibits a theme common to landscapes displayed in medieval art: an enclosed garden with a doorway leading into a rolling landscape, perhaps a park. The enclosed garden, which symbolizes Mary’s perpetual virginity, is depicted in detail with turf benches planted with flowers, topiary in pots, raised planting beds, and a “flowery mead”.

See also “The Medieval Lawn” (April 9, 2009) and “The Art of Topiary” (January 23, 2009).

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