- Mary Magdalene according to the New Testament was a sinner, probably a prostitute or adultress, who gave up her former life to become a follower of Christ. She was an important model for repentant sinners. When she knew that Jesus sat in the Pharisee's house, she had brought an ointment jar, and stood at his feet weeping. She washed his feet with tears, and wiped them with her hair, kissed them, and anointed them with the ointment. She was a beautiful woman who had witnessed Jesus`s crucifixion and resurrection and was also sent by Him to tell his other disciples of his return. In the painting she is depicted as a penitant sinner, lifting her teary eyes to heaven, sitting outside in a landscape in the shade of a big rock or cave, holding a skull over her lap; a symbol used to invite contemplation of death and mortality. She rests her arm on the bible, next to an ointment jar and a stool with a flail. On the top right corner is also a wooden cross. Images of Mary Magdalene, the fallen woman whom Jesus found worthy to redeem and who would spend the rest of her life in solitude to atone for her sins, were especially prevalent during the Counter-Reformation, a period of devout Catholicism that lasted from approximately 1540 to 1640.
- Repository/Location: National Museum of Fine Arts (Valletta, Malta)
- : 100 x 126 cm (without frame)
- Baroque [Create]
- 17th century [Create]
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