Search the Collections

Fragment of the Adoration of the Magi
Fragment of the Adoration of the Magi
Date:
ca. 1525
Location:
Not on display
Century:
Media:
Wool, Silk; Tapestry Weave
Dimensions:
289.6 x 182.9 cm (114 x 72 in.)
Object Type:
Country:
Continent:
Europe
Culture/People:
Flemish
Provenance:

Purchased in Granada, Spain (unknown vendor)

Accession Number:
1940.82
Acquisition Date:
1928-12-28
Credit Line:

Mildred Anna Williams Collection

Exhibition History:

Gallery Rotation, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Legion of Honor, 11/95 - 8/97
Gallery 1 Rotation, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Legion of Honor, 2/04 - 5/06

Two Wise Men, accompanied by a large retinue on foot and on horseback, bring gift to the young Child. The figure of the Virgin is incomplete. She sits facing slightly right toward the Magi on a cloth-covered platform set back from the flowery background. A cloth of honor stretches across the mansion behind her. Two angels can be seen on the roof, although they too are cropped; one of them appears to hold a book. Joseph touches his hand to his head in a gesture of wonder and respect at the coming of the Kings. A banner in the background carries the crescent and the star. The figure sitting at right is a Prophet. His rich mantle is trimmed with moiré, his hat encrusted with pearls. In his left hand the Prophet holds a tightly rolled scroll. With his right hand he makes an oratorical gesture, as if to say that the prophecy made in that remote time has been fulfilled by the birth of the Savior. From Anna Gray Bennett, "Five Centuries of Tapestry: The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco" (San Francisco: Chronicle Books; The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, 1976; repr. 1992): 52.