What child is this?

The elegant young woman in the blue cloak gazes pensively at the child cradled in her left arm. Her young son, perhaps two years old and wearing a lavender cloak over a red tunic, looks back at her and reaches up to move the veil from her face. The child, like the viewer, admires the flush on his mother’s cheek, her lovely almond-shaped eyes, her beautifully modeled nose and delicate lips. The mother and child are presented against a...

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About the Author


Leo J. O’Donovan, SJ, a frequent contributor to Commonweal, is president emeritus of Georgetown University.