Illustration by Margaret Ely Webb for A Third Reader (1908) by Frank Spaulding and Catherine Bryce, which begins with a poem “The Piper,” by Marie Van Vorst

On the Brevity of Life


“Magdalena Penitente”  (“The Penitent Magdalene”) (circa 1665) by Spanish painter Mateo Cerezo (1637-1666). Many painters chose the subject of Mary Magdalene repenting, meditating on the brevity of life and the hope of redemption. This version seems so real to me, not idealized at all.