02 Works, RELIGIOUS ART – Interpretation of the Bible! from the SPANISH GOLDEN AGE, With Footnotes – 83

Friar Juan Bautista Maíno (1581 – 1 April 1649) 

The Penitent Magdalene.

Mary Magdalene was one of the most frequently depicted saints in Juan Bautista Maíno’s cast of devotional figures, but never in a more sensual image than in this painting. Here the young and beautiful penitent sinner, seen holding a holy text with a jar of ointment at her side, has retreated from the world to meditate in solitude on the word of God. Maíno was one of only a handful of Spanish artists to visit Rome during Caravaggio’s lifetime and he became a key exponent of a poetic and lyrical Caravaggesque style, evidenced here in his adoption of intense colours, carefully nuanced modelling and a precise linearity to render his subject. More on this painting

Mary Magdalene,  literally translated as Mary the Magdalene or Mary of Magdala, is a figure in Christianity who, according to the Bible, traveled with Jesus as one of his followers. She is said to have witnessed Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection. Within the four Gospels she is named more than most of the apostles. Based on texts of the early Christian era in the third century, it seems that her status as an “apostle” rivals even Peter’s.

The Gospel of Luke says seven demons had gone out of her. She is most prominent in the narrative of the crucifixion of Jesus, at which she was present. She was also present two days later when, she was, either alone or as a member of a group of women, the first to testify to the resurrection of Jesus. John 20 and Mark 16:9 specifically name her as the first person to see Jesus after his resurrection.

During the Middle Ages, Mary Magdalene was regarded in Western Christianity as a repentant prostitute or promiscuous woman, claims not found in any of the four canonical gospels. More Mary Magdalene


Friar Juan Bautista Maíno (1581 – 1 April 1649) was a Spanish painter of the Baroque period, born in Pastrana. From 1600 to 1608, he lived in Italy. He was said to be a pupil of El Greco, though others claim he trained in or followed the styles of Carracci and Guido Reni, and his painting style was quite different over time in Spain.

In March 1611 he moved to Toledo, and in 1612 he painted the altarpiece of the Cuatro Pascuas for the main altar of the church of San Pedro Mártir, now in the Museo del Prado. His Adoration of the Shepherds (below) is there as well. Best known in Toledo, he became a Dominican in June 1613 and joined the convent of San Pedro Mártir in Toledo. He became tutor for King Felipe IV in 1620. In court, Maíno helped arrange patronage for Alonso Cano. He died in the College of Santo Tomas of Madrid. He was admired as a miniature portraitist. He helped Diego Velázquez in his early career and among his disciples was Juan Ricci. More on Friar Juan Bautista Maíno

Juan Bautista Mayno,  (1581–1649)

The Adoration of the Shepherds, between 1611 and 1613


Prado Museum

The Adoration of the Shepherds, in the Nativity of Jesus in art, is a scene in which shepherds are near witnesses to the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem, arriving soon after the actual birth. It is often combined in art with the Adoration of the Magi, in which case it is typically just referred to by the latter title. The Annunciation to the Shepherds, when they are summoned by an angel to the scene, is a distinct subject. More on The Adoration of the Shepherds

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