Portrait of the Reverend Mother María Antonia de Rivera
Artist/maker unknown, Mexican
In the eighteenth century it became fashionable among Mexican families to commission portraits of daughters who were taking their final vows to become nuns. Known as monjas coronadas, "crowned nuns," the portraits showed the young women as brides of Christ, wearing wedding rings and elaborate floral crowns. The inscriptions on this painting, some added after the death of the sitter, indicate that she was born in 1736, took vows in 1757, became a prioress or director of her order in 1791, and died in 1806.
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