An Eve – Pregnant with Promise

 

 

Rembrandt's "The Prophetess Anna" from http://www.rijksmuseum.nl

The old woman reading in such a thoughtful manner is St Anna the Prophetess.  According to the biblical story she was a woman of extreme old age who served God day and night in the Temple. She was present when Joseph and  Mary brought their son Jesus to the Temple.  St Anna immediately recognised Jesus as the long-awaited Messiah. Rembrandt shows Anna deeply absorbed in studying the Bible.  The light comes from behind her, touching on her Oriental-looking headdress stitched with gold thread and her red velvet cloak and shining directly on the Bible and her hand pointing to the Hebrew letters. Rembrandt painted this old woman’s hand with great care, with its thin wrinkled skin and clearly visible veins.  Anna’s face, however, is hidden in shadow.

Thank you, Anna, Mary and Joseph.  Against all odds, you believed and held fast to your purpose.

 

Blessings to one and all

who celebrate this birth

with love

for the baby boy.

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30 thoughts on “An Eve – Pregnant with Promise

  1. Dear Amy .. this is beautiful .. resonant of the Season, while giving us an insight into times past – when reading was ‘new’, as was study, as was a woman doing it .. and the detail of the painting is exquisite.

    Thank you so much – for your thoughts and wishes at this blessed time – have a lovely time with your family and friends .. Hilary

  2. What a beautiful piece. And I followed the link and wandered around the museum–wow……

    Blessings to you and yours, ma’am.
    Joyous season of love and light…..

  3. I have stood in awe in the biggest museums of the world gazing at the wonder that is Rembrandt. Now that is a man that saw into the very soul of his subject and gave us a glimps of their very being. Wow!
    Here’s wishing you an incredibley 2011 and a year filled with happiness. Mwah

  4. Beautiful, Amy. And not just the Rembrandt. It is also your conscious step towards recognising those who often go unnoticed. It is a great virtue, indeed!

  5. I appreciated this unusual look at a person little known during a holiday that sometimes wears thin with too much familiarity. A gorgeous painting and beautiful connection you’ve shared, thank you. And thanks so much for your blog visit.

  6. I am visiting this post late, Amy. What a wonderful painting that I don’t recall seeing before. I am absolutely drawn in by the thread of white along her garments. I don’t see it so much as light but spirit dancing along her and compelling her to read. This year, more than any other, as I prepared for the Holidays and the joy of sharing with family and friends, one thought kept popping up. How wonderful, regardless of individuals, that so very much preparation, giving, and community occurs around and on this one day. That, alone, is a magnificent wonder. Joy, now, and throughout the year, Amy!

    • Love your take on the thread of white. When I read about the painting (which I never saw when I was in Europe!) it describes how the blue veins show on her hands as they follow the lines of print. It just gives me the shivers. Joy to you, Leslie. I’m so grateful to meet you and your marvelous heart.

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