The inscription on the vase which contains lilies, roses (both symbols of the Virgin), pinks (a symbol of Christ’s passion) and pansies (a symbol of the Trinity) reads M (standing for 'Mater') Jhs ('Jesus') A ('Angelus' or 'Ave'). This was originally a portable altarpiece, containing a scene of the Nativity on the central panel and the Annunciation on the two panels forming the wings.
Where to see this painting?
English Heritage, The Wellington Collection, Apsley House
Hyde Park Corner, London, Greater London, England, W1J 7NT
If you are planning a visit to see this painting, check with the collection first. Paintings can be moved at short notice.
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