The Nativity, 1504



Bequest of Herschel V. Jonesexpand_more  P.68.141

Not on Viewexpand_more

The beautiful architecture and scenery of this print hide significant symbolic meanings associated with the birth of Jesus Christ. The dilapidated state of the buildings and the vegetation sprouting from the ruins signify the birth of the new amidst the decay of the old. The draw-well and broken pitcher allude to not only the purity of the Virgin, but also to the waters of Paradise and the sacrament of Baptism. Yet while the inclusion of symbolic meaning is typical for nativity scenes of the period, Dürer's mastery of perspective was definitely unique and remarkable.

The Nativity
Artist Life
Accession Number
Wm. Roscoe (L. 2645), 1816; Wm. Sharp (L. 2650), 1878 £7/10/-; Stuttgart Museum (L. 2325); Schröter (L. 2270); C. G. Boerner; Bressler & Co., 1925
Catalogue Raisonne
B.2; M.2 b/g; Holl. 2; D.38
Curator Approved

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