Mary Magdalene

Maker and role
Artist: Master of the Parrot, Flemish, active 1525-1550
ca. 1530
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Object detail

Oil on panel
14 1/2 x 11 3/16in (36.8 x 28.4cm)
Credit line
Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Frederic G. Oppenheimer
Accession number
Object type
Further information
The portrait-like pose and 1400s dress reveal a shift from the flat medieval style to the rounder modeling of the Renaissance. Mary Magdalene usually holds a jar of ointment, in reference to Luke 7:36: And behold, a woman in the city, who was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus was eating in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment,...And stood at his feet behind him, weeping; and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hair of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment.

To identify this artist from an era when individuals seldom signed their works, scholars have assigned the name Master of the Parrot for his inclusion of colorful birds in some of his religious paintings.
Subject period


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