[Daily article] June 7: Virgin and Child Enthroned (van der Weyden)

The Virgin and Child Enthroned is a small oil-on-oak panel painting
dated c. 1433, usually attributed to the Early Netherlandish artist
Rogier van der Weyden, and closely related to his Madonna Standing. The
panel is filled with Christian iconography, including representations of
prophets, the Annunciation, Christ’s infancy and resurrection, and
Mary’s Coronation. It is generally accepted as the earliest extant work
by van der Weyden, one of three works attributed to him of the Virgin
and Child enclosed in a niche on an exterior wall of a Gothic church.
The panel is housed in the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, in Madrid. It seems
to be the left-hand wing of a dismantled diptych, perhaps with the Saint
George and the Dragon panel now in the National Gallery of Art,
Washington, D.C. As an early van der Weyden, it takes influence from
Robert Campin and Jan van Eyck. Van der Weyden served his apprenticeship
under Campin, and the older master’s style is noticeable in the
architecture of the niche and in the Virgin’s face, hair and exposed
breast.

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Today’s selected anniversaries:

421:

Roman emperor Theodosius II married Aelia Eudocia, who later
helped protect Greek pagans and Jews from persecution.

1628:

The Petition of Right, a major English constitutional document
that set out specific liberties of the subject, was granted royal assent
by Charles I.

1917:

First World War: The British Army detonated 19 ammonal mines
under the German lines, killing 10,000 in the deadliest non-nuclear man-
made explosion in history.

1938:

Second Sino-Japanese War: The Chinese Nationalist government
destroyed dikes holding the Yellow River in an attempt to halt the rapid
advance of Japanese forces, causing a flood that killed at least 400,000
people.

1981:

The Israeli Air Force attacked and disabled the Osirak nuclear
reactor, assuming it was producing plutonium to further an Iraqi nuclear
weapons program.

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Wiktionary’s word of the day:

atrocious:
1. Frightful, evil, cruel, or monstrous.
2. Offensive or heinous.
3. Very bad; abominable, disgusting.

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Wikiquote quote of the day:

  we are each other’s harvest: we are each other’s business: we are
each other’s magnitude and bond  
–Gwendolyn Brooks

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