Presentation in the Temple
Albrecht Durer's exquisite original woodcut "The Presentation in the Temple " is from his famed suite "The Life of the Virgin, " which chronicles Mary's life story. This scene captures Mary bringing the infant Christ to the temple for the first time for ritual purification, as described in the Gospel of Luke. Saint Simeon, who had been told he would not die until he had seen the Messiah, took the infant Christ in his arms arms and said, 'Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace...' The block for this work was engraved by the master around 1503-4, and monogrammed 'AD' on the left hand pillar. According to Joseph Meder, this good and even impression was probably taken in the early to mid 1500s, and possibly during Durer's lifetime. The last known impressions of this work were taken about the year 1600.