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Rembrandt van Rijn (Leiden 1606-Amsterdam 1669)

Christ and St Mary Magdalen at the Tomb Signed and dated 1638

RCIN 404816

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Rembrandt depicts the scene described in St John’s Gospel (21:17) when Mary Magdalene encounters the resurrected figure of Christ and mistakes him for a gardener. Christ appears with the shovel, broad-brimmed hat and pruning knife that identify him as a gardener. A neatly clipped box hedge in the foreground establishes the setting as a garden, and emphasises the true message of the painting which was that Christ the gardener would provide the way from the earthly garden to the heavenly garden of Paradise.