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The Nativity with the Adoration of the Shepherds

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Flanders (made)

  • Date:

    early 16th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Relief in boxwood

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This relief is from the Salting bequest and is a detail from an altarpiece. It shows the Nativity and the Adoration of the Shepherds. In art the Nativity is the representation of the birth of Christ.
George Salting (b. 1836; d. 1909) - an Australian, who settled in England - was a prolific collector in a number of areas, including Chinese and Japanese ceramics and European art. By 1874 his collection had outgrown his residence in St. James's Street, prompting him to lend items to the South Kensington Museum. After his death in 1909, the majority of this astonishing collection passed to the V&A, where it was shown in its own galleries.

Physical description

Relief shows the scene in a thatched and partly ruined out-house on the roof of which are three angels singing. The Virgin kneels before the naked Child lying on a rush bed, and St. Joseph stands holding a lighted candle. Behind the Virgin two shepherds and at her side an ox and an ass.

Place of Origin

Flanders (made)


early 16th century (made)



Materials and Techniques

Relief in boxwood


Height: 9.2 cm, Width: 7.29 cm

Object history note

From the Salting bequest.

Historical context note

A detail from an altarpiece.

Descriptive line

Relief, boxwood, the Nativity with the Adoration of Shepherds, Flemish, early 16th century

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

'Salting Bequest (A. 70 to A. 1029-1910) / Murray Bequest (A. 1030 to A. 1096-1910)'. In: List of Works of Art Acquired by the Victoria and Albert Museum (Department of Architecture and Sculpture). London: Printed under the Authority of his Majesty's Stationery Office, by Eyre and Spottiswoode, Limited, East Harding Street, EC, p. 87





Subjects depicted

Ass; House; Ox; Candle; Angels


Christianity; Religion; Reliefs; Sculpture


Sculpture Collection

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