Painting: Journey of the Three Magi to Bethlehem Date: 1638-40 Technique: Oil on panel, 79 x 107 cm Location: New York Historical Society, New York Artist: Leonaert Bramer (1596-1674) Bramer was a highly successful artist who spent his entire life in Delft. He seems to have had a particular talent for painting night scenes - he's known to have produced several hundred of them of which this one which depicts the arrival of the Magi is one. The Magi are preceded by torch-bearing angels who light their way. They've either arrived at the stable in Bethlehem or are close enough to dismount.
Byrd published his four-part (AATB) Communion motet Vidimus stellam ejus in Oriente (For we have seen his star in the East) in the Gradualia of 1607. The text is from Matthew 2:2 and is proper to the celebration of the Feast of the Epiphany of Our Lord which falls on January 6th and marks the end of the twelve days of Christmas. This feast is one of the oldest Christian feasts and celebrates various events all of which commemorate Christ revealing himself or being revealed to others, in this case to the Magi – the three wise men. Enjoy :-)
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