The Virgin and Child with Two Angels

Image credit: The National Gallery, London

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The Virgin Mary stands or sits by an open window through which we can see a distant landscape. The Christ Child is cradled in her arms – he has the fingers of one hand in his mouth and clutches at his mother’s veil, which wraps around him, with the other. Two angels peer over the Virgin’s shoulder at the child: the one in the foreground holds a thistle, which was understood as a symbol of the Passion (Christ’s torture and crucifixion) on account of its thorns.

This small-scale painting was made for private devotion, and is usually accepted as a late work by Liberale da Verona, made after his return to his native city in 1492 or thereabouts.

The National Gallery, London



The Virgin and Child with Two Angels


probably about 1490-1510


Oil on wood


H 61 x W 45.1 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

Bought, 1883

Work type



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Normally on display at

The National Gallery, London

Trafalgar Square, London, Greater London WC2N 5DN England

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