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“The Marriage of the Virgin” by Raphael

"The Marriage of the Virgin" by Raphael

“The Marriage of the Virgin” by Raphael

“The Marriage of the Virgin” by Raphael depicts a marriage ceremony between Mary and Joseph. A similar themed version by Perugino inspired Raphael, the differences in the two artworks are marked by Raphael’s more subtle and refined style.

In this artwork, Raphael also challenged himself to draw the temple in perspective, with evident care, that it is delightful to behold. Painted during the Italian High Renaissance in 1504, this work was commissioned for a Franciscan church.


Joseph (Hebrew: Yosef; Greek: Ioséph) married Mary, Jesus’ mother, and was Jesus’ legal father, in the gospels.

In the Gospel of Luke, Joseph lived in Nazareth, but Jesus is born in Bethlehem because Joseph and Mary have to travel there to be counted in a census. Joseph’s occupation is mentioned only once, and he was referred to as a carpenter.

The last time Joseph appears in any Gospel book is in the story of the Passover visit to the Temple in Jerusalem when Jesus is 12 years old.

No mention is made of him after that. The Gospel stories focus on Jesus’ coming mission.

The Marriage of the Virgin

By Pietro Perugino in 1503

Joseph is venerated as Saint Joseph in the Catholic Church, Orthodox Church, Oriental Orthodox Church, Anglicanism, and Lutheranism.

In both Catholic and Protestant traditions, Joseph is regarded as the patron saint of workers and is associated with various feast days.


Raphael was an Italian painter and architect of the High Renaissance. His work is admired for its clarity of form, ease of composition, and together with Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci, he is one of the great masters of that period. 

Raphael was enormously productive, despite his death at 37, leaving a large body of work.

Many of his works are in the Vatican Palace, where the frescoed Raphael Rooms were the central, and the largest, work of his career. The best-known work is The School of Athens in the Vatican.

His career started in Umbria, then for four years he spent time in Florence absorbing the artistic renaissance of Florence and then his last twelve years in Rome, he worked for two Popes and their associates.

The Marriage of the Virgin

  • Title:               The Marriage of the Virgin
  • Italian:            Lo Sposalizio
  • Artist:             Raphael
  • Created:         1504
  • Medium:        Oil on roundheaded panel
  • Periods:          High Renaissance
  • Dimensions:   174 cm × 121 cm (69 in × 48 in)
  • Museum:        Brera Art Gallery, Pinacoteca di Brera


Brera – The Marriage of the Virgin

Raphael and Perugino, the Marriage of the Virgin

Explore Museums in Milan

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Raphael, Marriage of the Virgin, 1504


Raphael; Marriage of the Virgin

Raphael The Rebellious Renaissance Artist


“Art is never finished, only abandoned.”
– Leonardo da Vinci


Photo Credit 1) Raphael [Public domain] 2) Pietro Perugino [Public domain]

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