Thursday, April 25, 2013

The Churching of the Duchesse de Berry

Marie-Caroline of Naples, the Duchesse de Berry, celebrates her churching ceremony in what looks like either the private chapel or parish church, perhaps at Rosny, her country estate. She is holding the infant Duc de Bordeaux, born after the violent death of the Duc de Berry in 1820. The baby's nurse is kneeling in red behind her. It was a tradition for Catholic mothers to formally return to church forty days after giving birth, carrying the child, led by a priest with his stole. This was in imitation of the purification of the Virgin, when the Child Jesus was presented in the Temple, forty days after His birth. (Via Louis XX.)


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