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Assunzione della Vergine Maria Asciano

Assunzione della Vergine Maria

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Artist: Matteo di Giovanni
Year: 1474
Current location: National Gallery di Londra
Original location: Sant'Agostino


Central shovel of a triptych made for the church of Sant'Agostino.

From 1884, the altarpiece separated from the two side tables, was purchased by the National Gallery in London.

Since then, to be able to admire it in all its beauty, it is necessary to take a trip to the English capital.


Description of the central panel according to the National Gallery


This magnificent and imposing vision of the Virgin Mary’s body and soul being taken to heaven was the central panel of a large polyptych (a multi-panelled altarpiece). It was made for the monastery of Sant'Agostino in Asciano, in the countryside near the Tuscan town of Siena.

The Virgin is shown rising in majesty, high above the hills, trees and river of the landscape, her empty tomb below her. Saint Thomas strains to catch a pink ribbon – this is the Virgin’s belt, or girdle, which, according to legend, the Virgin dropped for him. Thomas had also touched Christ’s wounded side after the Resurrection. In both instances, Thomas served to prove the truth of the bodily resurrection.

The city of Siena was dedicated to the protection of the Virgin Mary, and many glorious images of her could be found there. By commissioning an image like this, Asciano and other surrounding towns were showing their own devotion while emulating Siena.

Assunzione della Vergine Maria