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“The Madonna with the Book” is one of the most famous creations of Sandro Botticelli, a contemporary of Leonardo da Vinci and Rafael Santi, who has remained on the same level with them for centuries.
Throughout his career, Botticelli created various images of the Madonnas. The paintings were attended by people and angels, a different background and general atmosphere. The painting "Madonna and Book" is knocked out of the total.
Books in the 15th century were quite expensive. Few could afford the manuscript, and even fewer could read it. Mary, on the picture, reads a book and, according to one version (and according to one of the lesser-known names of the picture), teaches the reader to read the baby Christ. Recall that the picture was painted in an era when the ability to read was considered a sign of either holiness or witchcraft.
Scientists have found that the book is called "The Hourly Book of Mary." In this way, the artist talks about the authority of the church and its teachings.
There are other traditional symbols in the portrait. The crown of thorns and several nails in the hands of the baby symbolizes the impending suffering. Cherries placed next to the Hourglass speak of a promised paradise, which can only be reached by believers.
The images that the artist created in the 1480s are noticeably more complex than the earlier paintings. Unusual emotions appear here - sadness, insecurity. The baby in these paintings is already depicted with nails and a crown of thorns, symbols of the coming Passion and sacrifice.
The face of the Madonna is the ideal of the artist's beauty. Graceful and clear features, fair skin, the whole figure breathes innocence and purity.
The pose of the baby is both trust and instability. He is half sitting on his mother’s lap and seems to be not comfortable. He turned around and looked at Mary. But she is full of sad thought.
Botticelli of this period is a fairly mature artist with students.
Painting Court of Paris