The Assumption

17th or 18th century
St. Stephen's Cathedral, Vienna, Austria

This unusual piece pictures the moment when Mary's ascent begins. The angelic choir, usually positioned far above the Apostles, is in this case with them on nearly the same plane. The sense of drama and the progression from dark to light tones characterize many Assumptions of the 17th and 18th centuries.

In Coronation of the Virgin images Mary often has a hand on her breast, but in Assumptions this gesture is more rare, especially before the 17th century.

The two men on the left are St. Paul, with his sword and long beard, and St. Peter, with his short beard and advancing baldness.

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Photographed at the cathedral by Richard Stracke, shared under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.