Ecce Ancilla Domini! (The Annunciation) (1849-50) by Dante Gabriel Rossetti

Ecce Ancilla Domini! (The Annunciation) - Dante Gabriel Rossetti - 1849 - 1850

Artwork Information

TitleEcce Ancilla Domini! (The Annunciation)
ArtistDante Gabriel Rossetti
Date1849 - 1850
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions41.9 x 72.7 cm
Art MovementRomanticism
Current LocationTate Britain, London, UK

About Ecce Ancilla Domini! (The Annunciation)

The artwork “Ecce Ancilla Domini! (The Annunciation)” by Dante Gabriel Rossetti, created between 1849 and 1850, is an oil on canvas painting that belongs to the Romanticism movement. With dimensions of 41.9 by 72.7 cm, this religious painting is currently housed at Tate Britain in London, UK.

The painting portrays the biblical scene of the Annunciation, in which the angel Gabriel announces to the Virgin Mary that she will conceive and become the mother of Jesus Christ. In the artwork, the angel Gabriel is depicted as a tall, slender figure standing on the left, clothed in white with a golden halo around his head and flames around his feet, signifying his divine nature. He holds a lily, a symbol of purity, and extends it towards the seated figure of Mary, who occupies the right side of the canvas. Mary, also haloed, appears startled or introspective as she receives the news, visually underscored by her direct gaze and her hand pausing above her heart. The limited color palette focuses on soft hues, with Mary’s red hair and the blue drapery behind her serving as points of color against the otherwise muted tones. The precise and delicate rendering of figures and objects paints a scene rich in symbolic elements, reflective of the Romantic era’s emphasis on emotion and individual interpretation of classic themes.

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