Young Woman with a Pink

Hans Memling Netherlandish

Not on view

Rather than depicting a specific woman, this painting of an idealized beauty probably once formed the outer left wing of a triptych. Together with its pendant (Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam), the panel represents the virtues of true love and the obstacles it must overcome. The woman holds a pink, a flower symbolizing betrothal or marriage. She gazes toward the pendant panel, which depicts two horses and a monkey, symbols for the man in love and the opposing attributes of lust and faithfulness. The interior of the triptych perhaps depicted portraits of the betrothed couple and their family coats of arms on the interior wings.

Young Woman with a Pink, Hans Memling (Netherlandish, Seligenstadt, active by 1465–died 1494 Bruges) and Workshop, Oil on wood

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