This tempera painting depicts the Virgin with a sleeping Christ child on a parapet. The Virgin is painted from the waist up. She is dressed in a red gown with a blue robe over it. She has a white veil draped over her head and across her chest with a gold clasp to hold the material at her throat. She has pale skin, medium brown hair, and gazes lovingly at the sleeping child who is reclined on white pillows in front of her. The Virgin cradles the child’s head in her left hand and the child grasps her right hand at her chest. The child is depicted as a pale skinned chubby nude with rosy cheeks and curly blonde hair and is seen resting on a tan and brown parapet with a small white label in the center. Behind them the sky fades upward from pale pink to off white to blue.
Isabella Stewart Gardner kept meticulous records of many of her acquisitions. In keeping with this legacy, object information is continually being reviewed, updated, and enriched in order to give greater access to the collection.